Robert Cox Remarks to Board of Education on Coverup Culture Which Bred Jose Martinez Predations in New Rochelle Schools

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Robert Cox Remarks to Board of Education on Coverup Culture Which Bred Jose Martinez Predations in New Rochelle Schools

March 30, 2011 - 11:33

Remarks made by Robert Cox, Managing Editor, Talk of the Sound, to the Board of Education on March 29, 2011:

The leadership of this district, the senior administrators, the Superintendent and you, the Board of Education has created a culture in the New Rochelle school system where perpetrators are seen as victims and the victims are seen as perpetrators, where those who blow the whistle on wrongdoing are the enemy and those whose do wrong are protected.

When you tolerate employees who routinely hurl racial epithets at students and staff, when you tolerate security guards who transmit nude images of children to other staff and spread them around the schools, when you tolerate wholesale misappropriation of school vehicles, equipment and supplies, tolerate no show jobs, submit falsified violent incident reports to the State, hire as head of security a man heavily involved with an illegal gambling web site featuring vile, misogynic pornographic images of women and then allow that same man to coach girl’s sports team, when you endorse fraudulent 211 waivers so security administrators can improperly double-dip on their state pension, when you allow workers to use falsified residency papers to obtain civil service positions for which they are not qualified, when you allow teachers to begin working at the school district without having first passed a background check, when you fail to check the job qualifications of civil service applicants so that people without high school diplomas or GEDs and even criminal records, are hired by the district, when you routinely cover up serious crimes by refusing to cooperate with police or the DA, when you delete video tapes of criminal acts, or otherwise hinder criminal investigations in the schools and in general when you reflexively adopt a “circle the wagons” mentality with every transgression big and small then you not only make a Jose Martinez possible in New Rochelle, you make it inevitable.

All of these things and more have been reported to this board and to the community through my web site, Talk of the Sound. And what have you done about it? Nothing – except attack me for being the bearer of bad news otherwise known as the truth.

Richard, you have some nerve sitting there last night at the Jefferson School telling those poor parents echoing concerns raised on my web site to “consider the source,” that they should not believe Talk of the Sound, they should only believe you. Are you truly so out of touch that you did not understand that you were talking to parents who first learned about their Assistant Principal’s sudden departure, his unexplained disappearance, the allegations against him and his arrest not from you, not from the school district but from me, from Talk of the Sound?

The problem “Richard”, is that my reporting has always proved out in the end. This might help you understand why, despite spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on lawyers and private investigators to thwart me, to discredit me, to harass me and to retaliate against my family, I have many thousands of loyal readers and listeners and few believe a word you say.

The culture that has bloomed under your leadership is one where those who come forward with information about wrongdoing are treated as the enemy and those who do wrong are viewed as victims to be protected. It is a seriously dysfunctional, bizarro-world that you have created in your short time here in New Rochelle along with a collapse in academic performance, on-time graduation rates and a spike in crime in our schools.

But New Rochelle got to see, again, over these past few weeks who has been right all along (me) and who has been wrong (you).

To the board, I cannot tell whether some of you know about this wrong doing and avert your eyes or whether it is willful ignorance or that you are simply naive or just plain cowards but, as I have often said, the New Rochelle school system is a criminal enterprise with an educational mission and nothing has done more to prove that point that the predations of Jose Martinez, the ignoring of repeated red flags and your bumbling, ill-considered response.

There are 3 Comments

Martin Sanchez's picture

I've received nearly 30 calls in the last few days related to the incident at Isaac.
And I've encouraged every person to come here tonight.
One aspect of these phone calls that concerns me deeply, is the fear that people have of approaching the board or district and school administrators.
Parents are afraid that they will be chastized, or that their children will pay consequences.
Staff and teachers are afraid of "retribution" in terms of the assignments they will face if they speak up.
Parents, staff and teachers are demoralized and angry because when they have attempted to bring concerns to the table in the past, their input has been dismissed, or swallowed behind the closed doors of executive session board meetings.
Action by the district office and board on issues of deep concern to our community is greatly delayed, rescheduled for a meeting in the distant future, or never responded to at all.
This lack of response and lack of accountability to our community needs to STOP now.
First the noose at Isaac, then a student hurt on school grounds and not properly cared for, then a security guard hurting a child.
In none of these situations was there a respectful response, or a response which helps parents feel confident their children are safe.

You have stated there will be an internal investigation.
How will this investigation be different?
Will you protect the staff and teachers who come forward?
Will you communicate and be accountable to parents?
I truly hope so.

Good investigative reporting is the only helpful thing happening in this miserable city right now. Otherwise, we'd all continue to be blind about what is happening in front of us every day and keep holding our breathes until it gets better. Here's a tip, don't. This site and radio show is the best idea to come out of New Rochelle in a long time and it took one of us, a civilian, not an official, to make it all happen.

Obviously the Board of Education and city government would have a problem with anyone getting in the way of them doing whatever the hell they want. It must have been nice all of the previous years to be a dinosaur in the governing body without a brain or a care in the world about what is right or wrong or good for the people. Heck, if I got to goof off all day and be corrupt at my own job without anyone noticing I would be pissed too when someone road into town and started noticing and shutting down that undeserved leisure.

I will definitely not be raising children in the New Rochelle School system. I'll be out of here before that happens. I'm speaking from experience. I grew up through the NR school system, attending Isaac Young and NRHS. There were racial gangs starting in the 6th grade and Isaac was a questionable place then and by the way things have been looking today, I'm sure it's a lot worse and scarier for kids in the Bongo era. I had a front row seat everyday of the excuse for a human that Donna Henry claims to be. How she's still employed, I have no clue and there are many more like her. It's like having convicts watch your children all day. They're in great hands.

The high school wasn't any better. Security in these schools would be a group to avoid, rather than seek assistance from or receive any sort of help. Most of them are friends with the criminals and troublemakers who will most likely be wrapping their hands around bars than a diploma come the age of 18.

Altogether, the majority of the teachers have phoned it in years ago and have no use for going to work in the morning other than riding out their tenure. There was about 3 teachers in all the years that actually seemed to make a real effort and give kids the education they deserve.

This city should spend less time trying to discredit the reported news and more time fixing the problem. An official looks very silly and disempowered when they defend themselves against the truth in the media which doesn't lie. Bob is doing his job, now do yours or get the hell out.

Keep it up, Mr. Cox. At least someone is trying.

...and to New Rochelle, awesome work overall, morons.


I love your website and I direct all my New Rochelle friends to it.. If it weren't for your site I don't know what I would do.....Please keep up the good work....