By Rosalie Tirella
Well, I hope pin-head Telegram & Gazette columnist Clive McFarlane is feeling guilty.
Several months ago, when the Worcester School Committee was voting on the new school superintendent, school committee member Dottie Hargrove put her vote behind school superintendent candidate Melinda J. Boone, who hails from Norfolk, VA. By doing so, the wonderfully sunny and INTELLIGENT Dottie Hargrove made way for the city’s first African American/female school superintendent and put an end to the serious nepotism that parades as hiring practice in the Worcester Publis Schools.
By voting the way she did, Dottie Hargrove was actually answering the prayers of most Worcesterites. She was saying: It’s not who you know in this town anymore – it’s what you know! By dumping job candidate Steven Mills, the city’s connected-guy, Dottie, along with the majority of the school committee, was saying this LOUD AND CLEAR to Mills and most important the parents and students of Worcester: a new day is dawning in Worcester.
But Mills was/is deaf. In a story about his desire to be the next Worcester school superintendent, he made it a point to flaunt the fact that he worked on Lt. Gov. Tim Murray’s political campaigns – as if that would instantly make him school superintendent of Worcester. What a stupid – but telling – thing for Mills – the toady! – to say to a reporter!
The real questions on Worcester parents’/residents’ minds: Did Mills have enough experience? Was he smart enough to handle the work load? Could he do the job? Most people wanted answers to those questions and didn’t give a damn if Mills is palsy walsy with Murray.
And the majority of Worcester School Committee members wanted answers to those questions, too. And when they got the answers – based on a non-partisan, super-intelligent search committee who reviewed all candidate resumes, interviewed all candidates, etc and recommended Boone for the job – it was a new dawn for Worcester!
You would think Clive McFarlane, a Black of Jamaican descent, would have been celebrating with the rest of us. After all, he was on the receiving end of affirmative action policies when it came to getting his metro columnist job at the T & G.
Years ago, Clive would most likely have not gotten his plum job because the old T & G was so clubby. Thanks to places like the MLK Center on Dewey street, whose director Robert Thomas told me several years ago that he had to “point a gun” to then T & G publisher’s Bruce Bennett’s head to get him to hire an Asian American for a job at the T & G, things have changed at the T & G (well, slightly). Thomas told me Bennett said to him something like: you know how I feel about affirmative action, Robert. Well, dink-puss Bennett got his arm twisted by Thomas and he relented and hired the Asian American guy – who worked out wonderfully. Bennett is gone – and actually right after a reminder from InCity Times that there are NO reporters of color at the T & G, Bennett gave McFarlane the job and when he was retiring from the T & G said he was glad of his affirmative action (Clive as metro columnist) hires.
So how stupid of Clive McFarlane – a product of affirmative action, a system whose goal is to destroy the old white boys’ club – to defend the skewed hiring practices of the Worcester Public School System – a system that most likely would have kept him out of any teaching job.
Clive beat Dottie up in his column last winter – making her seem spacy, as if she didn’t know what she was doing and thus ruined the W.P. Schools for everyone! For two columns Clive dumped on Dottie, intimating that she was putting an end to a long, grand, proud Worcester teaching tradition. Clive said even though the WPS system was clubby, the WPS had great teachers and our school system was excellent. So what if it was a teeny bit … corrupt? he seemed to be saying. Clive was for the status quo – a status quo that doesn’t give two shits for him.
But I ask: How can you have an excellent school system when you have most of our schools without any black/Lationo teachers while our schools are filled with a majority of minority students?
So in has last Dottie Hargrove column ( a week or so ago) the idiot Clive threw Dottie a bone: Yes! Dottie was passionate about inner-city kids and their education! No one was more passionate about these kids!
Unlike you, asshole!
Because if you were, Clive, you would have known that Dottie was on the poor minority kids’ side all along! That she had a ton of love for the kids in our schools – was a reading teacher for many years in our school system, is a professor now – teaching college students how to be effective teachers.
If only you had interviewed her, Clive-o, and given her a fair shake!
And that’s no jive.