LSR-7 should avoid a jury trial at all cost on this suit

On the heels of a lawsuit filed earlier this year by Lee’s Summit R-7 School District director of technology Dr. Amy Gates, the district now finds itself as a defendant in yet another case, this time for race discrimation and violation of the Missouri Human Rights Act.

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Our school ‘to-do’ list is excruciatingly long

We have a lot of work to do. There’s likely a checklist floating around the Stansberry Leadership Center right now that has a long, arduous list of items that we simply have to get done in our school district. While I can’t possibly imagine the entirety of this list, a few items are pretty obvious and need to be addressed immediately.

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The school district and the superintendent parted ways — what lesson did we learn?

It’s been really loud in Lee’s Summit during the past several months. Voices have been raised in coffee shops, the district Board Room, driveways and (especially) social media forums. Righteous indignation (on all sides) have hit levels of extreme usually reserved for debates on national political issues. I’d like to be able to say we’re unaccustomed to this on a local level. That should be the case. But I think we’ve seen this kind of sewer muck seep into our local conversations a lot over the last 3 years.

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LSR7 Board of Education reconsiders earlier decision, votes to contract with Educational Equity Consultants

In a reversal of a decision made in May, the Lee’s Summit R-7 Board of Education voted in special session Wednesday evening to enter into a contract with Educational Equity Consultants.

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Ugly e-mails, Sheriff’s Tweets, superintendent protection

When you factor in threatening behavior, law enforcement and the politicization of our district issues, we collectively must say — or rather shout — “enough!”

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The fighting has been in public, why not let us in on the plans to make up?

The teachers, the community, the entire Kansas City metro area sat and waited all day June 4 for word from the Stansberry Leadership Center. All. Day.

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A little district housecleaning as we head into summer

As the barrage of unsavory press continues to unravel in our school district, it’s probably time we tie up a few loose ends as we head into the summer break.

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Board meeting debacle a hard, unnecessary lesson

The single agenda item for the May 22 Lee’s Summit R-7 Board of Education Work Session was simple and innocuous enough: “Board discussion on equity plan and moving forward.”

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What does Carpenter's 1-year extension with the LS R-7 District tell us?

For the past two weeks, a contract extending Dr. Dennis Carpenter’s tenure as Lee’s Summit R-7 Superintendent has been bouncing around between himself and the board of education. What was passed by a 5-2 vote March 14 wasn’t official until the district released details of Carpenter’s contract extension just this past week.

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LS R-7 deserves this victory lap

The last eight weeks or more have proven a challenging time for the Lee’s Summit R-7 School District. And that doesn’t have a thing to do with the barrage of winter that has stolen a day or more every week since Christmas break.

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A missed opportunity to correct the narrative

I lost track of how many times KCUR Up to Date host Steve Kraske tried to steer his recent conversation with Lee’s Summit R-7 Superintendent Dennis Carpenter to race and race relations. Carpenter did what he could to refocus the discussion, but after 15-20 minutes or so, we unfortunately learned little if anything about recent boundary changes and...

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Be kind to the boundary team

After a lengthy process (involving a citizen-led team we should profusely thank, more on that later), lots of headaches, heartaches, heartburn, public gnashing, near-fainting on social media and lots of discussions seeming to ominously foreshadow a mental health crisis if a kiddo is forced to attend a different school than the year before, we finally have our boundary changes.

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R7 Board should review its policies, and soon

Transparency. Communication. These have been the assurances coming from Lee’s Summit R-7 Superintendent Dr. Dennis Carpenter, administrators, Board of Education members and candidates for the board during the past three years as the district looks to move on from a series of public relations stumbles related to past decisions from the superintendent on down.

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Lack of communication hindering public trust during LSR7 conversations

Last weekend’s meltdown on social media shows us we still have a long way to go to accomplish some basic steps in communication in the R-7 District, namely controlling the message, owning the narrative and delivery to our parents and taxpayers.

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School safety forum heavy on good intentions, somewhat lean on details

There are two things I can predict with some degree of certainty regarding school security in Lee’s Summit. First, don’t look for metal detectors to be installed in any of our buildings. Secondly, as long as Dennis Carpenter is superintendent, we won’t be arming our teachers.

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