Saturday, October 26, 2019

Red Scare or Don’t Cry for Glenn Roquemore, Argentina

Good times. Once upon a time: a gangster-themed fundraiser at the PAC. 

Sometimes you go searching for a story while other times you are standing in your driveway, unpacking groceries from your car when the story drives right up and says hello.

That’s what happened to Rebel Girl on Friday.

She had noticed the car following her up Olive Hill. It had turned out of Madame Modjeska’s estate, Arden, and she presumed it was a lost flatlander who she would have redirect and turn around. But it wasn’t. This fellow knew exactly where he was and who she was. It had been awhile  - years! - since they seen each other though they glimpsed each other and their lives on social media.

He was an IVC alum, one of those returning students who had showed up in the mid-90s in creative writing and journalism classes, taking them over and over again.  Already an attorney, he was looking for something new and found it at the little college in the orange groves. An intrepid reporter on the IVC student newspaper, The Voice, he broke the story of the Holocaust denier on the college board (good times) which was picked up by news outlets across the country.  Now, over 20 year later, he is a highly regarded journalist, his byline familiar across the county. He had been at Arden as follow-up to a story he was writing.

They greeted each other warmly.  “You must be dropping by to celebrate the departure of Roquemore,” she quipped.  He hadn’t heard, so of course, she filled him in.

“Did I ever tell you my Glenn Roquemore story?” he asked.

No, she said, do tell.

It was a doozy.  It went something like this:

Years ago, in 2013, Red Emma, Rebel Girl’s sweetie, was hired by the former student, by then an editor of a glossy monthly, to pen profiles of OC residents, not famous people, but extraordinary ordinary people. Red called this gig the best writing job he ever had: the pay was good (great, actually at a time when they needed it); he could choose his own subjects; he was paired with an amazing photographer and he got to work with an ace editor. Among the people Red profiled: the Marine who regularly played his full drum kit on a lonely stretch of Santiago Canyon Road for all to see; the crossing guard at Trabuco Mesa Elementary School; the local meter reader; the sweet potato seller at the Laguna Woods Farmers Market. You get the picture.

Well, a few months into the series, Red’s editor was contacted by the publisher.  The publisher was known to Rebel Girl because she too had once written for two of his many magazines, first as a book reviewer, next as a features writer and monthly columnist.  He was and is a person of stature in the community.

The publisher told the editor that he had received a communication from one Glenn Roquemore. The two men knew each other from the kinds of associations two men like that have: chamber of commerce and other community associations. Roquemore was writing because he was very concerned about a writer on staff - a leftist writer– he wanted to bring this man to the publisher’s attention. The spirit of the communication was that something should be done about this writer who had somehow gotten this job, a position that clearly, in the mind of complainant, he should not have due to his political views.  

The publisher passed the information on to the editor. The editor took note of it and filed it away. Red Emma continued to write.

Now you get a new picture. It’s a particularly ugly picture, one which shows someone using his social and political power to smear, with the hopes of causing someone to lose his job due to, not his lack of qualifications, but due to his political views.

What was Red’s relationship to IVC  (and Roquemore) at the time? Aside from his marriage to Rebel Girl, none.  He had not taught at the college in well over a decade. (The circumstances of his departure here, courtesy of one Howard Gensler, who is, we hear, recently departed from Saddleback.) Instead, he taught at UCI where he is still employed. He was writing for a number of publications which he continues to do. He edits a literary journal for Santa Monica College. He hosts a radio show. One of Red's guests was UCI's Chancellor Howard Gillman, in conversation about the book, "Free Speech on Campus," he co-wrote with  Erwin Chemerinksy. You can check out the interview here. (One might begin to wonder at this point if Glenn also reached out to Gillman about Red's political beliefs...)

Red Emma was making a living doing the work he had been hired to do.

Last year about this time, when Rebel Girl struggled to comprehend how Roquemore and others at the college could have failed to inform her of a threat against her by a former student, she questioned whether it was incompetence or malice. 

She opted for incompetence as malice seemed, so, well, malicious.

But Friday, standing on the dusty road with her former student, hearing this story of Roquemore reaching out to her husband’s employer to object and inform about his political beliefs, to make trouble for him, to  - is there any doubt here? - to get him fired, she wonders if she got it wrong last year. Maybe it was intentional malice after all. Clearly Glenn is capable of that. Clearly. How else to explain this quaint throwback to McCarthyism?

Of course, Red was fortunate that the people Roquemore sought to enlist resisted his overtures, that the publisher and editor didn’t take his red bait. Why? For all sorts of good reasons, one surmises, including the fact they are journalists – journalists! JOURNALISTS in the 21st century. Geez. And of course Roquemore held no power or sway over them, unlike at the college, where one longtime staff person who has been working there nearly 30 years recently expressed their real fear of losing their job should Glenn or Linda see them walking over to say good-bye to Cessa.

One of Red’s profiles – perhaps the one which brought the series to Glenn’s attention – was of IVC’s own Professor Virginia Shank, still a fairly new faculty member, already distinguished by her teaching (Teacher of the Year in 2014), her writing and her distinctive mode of transportation: the bright blue velomobile. The photo is fabulous. The photographer shot it outside IVC’s BSTIC building, and though you cannot see her, Rebel Girl is in the photo, holding out Virginia’s tie so it appears to be flying in the wind. Her hand was photo-shopped out of the final, which was only right. The effect is stunning. If Rebel Girl remembers correctly, the tie belongs to Virginia’s late father. She still wears it. 

With her green eyes, red hair, porcelain skin, and stylish retro-Victorian ensembles suggesting both wit, good taste and an eye for vintage clothing-store finery, Virginia Shank unshyly personifies the romantic ideal of the English professor. This young poet and teacher originally from Eden, New York recently earned “Teacher of the Year” at Irvine Valley College, after teaching there only four semesters. The busy little community college in what’s left of an orange grove is lucky to have her. Professor Shank’s curriculum vitae is loaded for serious academic bear: PhD in English from Binghamton, MFA in poetry from University of Idaho, plenty of awards, research and accolades as a student and grad student….
What should a college president have done having read a glowing profile of a new hire, penned by a former employee printed in a high-profile magazine distributed across the county? Perhaps penned a note of congratulation and appreciation to one or both. Perhaps seized the moment to even extend rapprochement to the latter. Redemption is possible. Things do change. Rebel Girl  reminds her students often of this. The semester is long enough to turn things around. So is life.

But what did Glenn do? You know what he did.  He tried to get the writer fired. 

What's your Glenn Roquemore story?


Friday, October 25, 2019

Remembering Glenn Roquemore, part 1

Glenn got his start on Team Mathur, 1997

     “We’ve got to have a party!” said the Humanities instructor. “A celebration!”
     “Well, let’s wait a bit. We don’t want to be too obvious about it,” said a faculty friend. “I don’t wanna get fired!”
. . .
     “I bet Diane is feeling a bit queasy this morning.”
     “Yeah, her protector is gone.”
     “I wonder what Linda is thinkin’? She’s gotta be next.”

Clueless Roquemore makes agreement with the enemy, U of Phoenix
. . .
     “It came as a complete surprise,” said the administrator, alone in her office. “We had no idea.”
     I said: “Well, we expected that his contract would not get renewed—and we expected that to come out Monday, at the board meeting. But it was kinda weird how this came down yesterday, what with that ‘conversation with Glenn’ guff. They agreed that he’d leave? What was all that about?”
. . .
     Yesterday, I went in search of Chris M, but he was not in his office. “He’s away today,” said his administrative assistant. “Should I give ‘im a message?”
     “Nope,” I said. I just smiled. She must’ve known what I was smilin’ about.
. . .
     “I feel sorry for his family,” said the former administrator.
     “Really?” I said. “I think they’re sittin’ pretty.”
     “Normally, the President would be expected to serve through June, giving everyone a chance to transition. Maybe, yesterday, he got pissed about getting a bad evaluation and he quit on the spot!”
. . .
     “Do you suppose this thing has something to do with Bruce’s firing a few days ago?” [Bruce Hagan, Irvine Valley College Director of Technology Services; resignation, 10/21]
     “Didn’t Glenn just give him some award recently?”
. . .

For a while, Glenn enjoyed the protection of Trustee Wagner,
now on the OC Board of Supes

Cessa's gone – DtB post, 10/9/19

…A student cried out that at a meeting she and other students were told that due to personal problems, Cessa had decided to leave. That's a lie, the student said, you didn't decide to leave.

Another person pointed out that this is the so-called Year of Equity at IVC and the administration has just fired the single person responsible for bringing measurably increased equity on campus.

Students wept….
. . .

Dissent 2
March 9, 1998
On March 6, 2010, someone left this comment on the blog:

Nepotism reigns with the [IVC] President. Do we have to hire all of your wife's relatives?
     So let's turn to THE WIFE.

     ● Here's an interesting item from October of 2010 (
An administrator is fired. Over cake):

Livin' big
     Kiana is held in low esteem by some faculty at the college, in part owing to her reputation for unapologetically exploiting her, um, influence. Evidently, in other ways, too, she does not leave the best of impressions as a colleague and educator.
     Kiana Tabibzadeh, of course, is President Glenn Roquemore's wife.
     On Friday, someone said: "Don't wanna eat a Kiana cake." That sort of thing. Har har. There were maybe eight people in the room.
     Dean Schrader did not encourage the impromptu jocularity. Possibly, she joined in the laughter. She eventually said something to discourage it.
     In any case, it was a fleeting episode about cake--one that briefly tapped into a widely-shared scorn of an arrogant and, well, notorious colleague.

. . .
     The most commonly repeated story concerns Kiana's hiring a dozen or so years ago. Glenn was on the hiring committee. Some on the hiring committee were unimpressed by Kiana. Notoriously, Glenn championed her cause. She was hired.
     He was also dating her at the time. Or so I've been assured numerous times by persons claiming to be in the know.
     Today, I briefly spoke with a former IVC Affirmative Action officer. He told me that he had brought this episode up with then-Chancellor Lombardi, who said he'd deal with it. But, of course, nothing was done.
     I recall an incident seven or eight years ago in which it was learned that Kiana was engineering her selection as "Teacher of the Year." (I was an officer in the Senate at the time.) She had instructed her students to submit the required glowing letters. We couldn't believe it. That time, the scheme was undone, owing to forceful objections from the Academic Senate.
. . .
17 years of this shite
     An administrator told me this story: sometimes, evidently, Kiana will hole up in her office during her office hours and refuse to see students who are waiting to speak with her.
     One such time, her dean knocked on Kiana's door herself. There was no answer.
     Later in the day, the VPI (pre-Justice) visited that dean, explaining to her that, according to Kiana's husband (i.e., Roquemore), the dean's door-knocking had caused Kiana a "near nervous breakdown"!
     Evidently, efforts to have Kiana actually hold office hours were verboten, owing to Kiana's delicate nerves.
. . .
     More recently, Susan Cooper became the dean of this benighted zone of IVC instructors. She soon discovered the then-traditional abuses, including a series of manifestly hinky scheduling practices enforced by their beneficiary, Kiana Tabibzadeh. Cooper was determined to put a stop to that nonsense, but, to the degree that she pressed the matter, to that degree she experienced ferocious push-back from Glenn, who made her life miserable. In the end, she found it necessary to leave the college.
     Not long ago, I had lunch with a former IVC administrator. He or she or it informed me that Kiana's father has been working at IVC for years (admittedly, in some minor role as a test proctor or something similar)--this despite Mr. Fuentes' occasional noisy (albeit hypocritical) accusations of nepotism at the colleges.
     Some of us have complained about these abuses for many years. I recall arranging to meet with newly-elected trustee Don Wagner in late 1998. I had lunch with him at a restaurant across the street from the college. Among other things, I described some of the abuses mentioned above.
     Well, I guess he didn't believe me. Absolutely nothing was done about them. 
. . .
DtB, 2/15/18

   Tabibzadeh has a surprisingly high salary. How come?
     Part of the answer is her doctorate, earned in 2015. I did a little checking and found her dissertation (here). It is entitled "Student Academic Achievement in College Chemistry" (it's a degree in "education leadership," not chemistry), and it was conferred by Trident University International, a tiny, new (2007) for-profit located in beauteous Cypress, CA.
     Trident has no campus, since all of its instruction is online. 
     Tabibzadeh's dissertation committee is curious. Included among its three members are Sanjay Gupta and Brent Monte, both Math instructors at IVC. The committee chair is Dr. Wenling Li, "Doctoral Studies Director" of Trident's College of Education.

. . .
   ● A blast from the past: The Irvine Valley Chronicles, Feb. 6, 2013:

c. 2012 -Vacationing in Hawaii (?) with probie Scott
Kiana wears the bollocks

     Did you know that one of the current probies [Dan Scott] is a close personal friend of the college President? Gosh, I do hope everyone is on their best behavior. It will be interesting to learn who'll get tenure and who won't.
     —Well, maybe not "interesting."

Note: Scott did receive tenure
     ● In her dissertation, Tabibzadeh thanks "Dr. Mary Scott." This would seem to be the wife of IVC business instructor Dan Scott, who, along with Mary (Provost at Concordia U), vacationed with the Roquemores despite Dan's probationary status. (See photo above.)

     ● Dan Scott is a Doctor of Business Administration (DBS), evidently. And where'd he get that degree? U of Phoenix, natch. (The institution is "unranked," of course, by U.S. News & WR. Why? "School refused to fill out U.S. News statistical survey.") As you know, Roquemore, inexplicably, has a high regard of UoP. Selectivity? "Least selective."
Special relationship w/ Prez
     ● According to his LinkedIn page, Scott worked as an adjunct at Concordia U from 2004-2009. If he was married to Mary, Provost of Concordia (2006), at the time—BINGO! It's nepotism time once again.
     Evidently, Scott also worked for the ethically challenged ARAMARK corporation for 19 years.\

Glenn in the "good old days" with various corrupt bastards . . .
¡I am the process!
     DtB readers know that Irvine Valley College has a very mixed record with regard to its invited commencement speakers. Some have been good. Some have been embarrassing in one way or another. (Plagiarism anyone?)
     The chief difficulty here is familiar: the piss-poor leadership of IVC Prez-for-life Glenn Roquemore, that remarkably non- (or anti-) academic fellow (he hangs out a lot at the Chamber of Commerce and gives speeches over at the knuckle-dragging Pacifica Institute), who generally finds ways to get who he wants at commencement, despite student or faculty preferences—and the demands of process!—to the contrary.
     This year is no exception. The college has a process according to which a committee, with wide representation, arrives at a list of carefully winnowed committee-approved candidates. The committee’s suggestions are sent up to the Prez, who makes the final selection. 
     For years, the Reb, among others, has suggested inviting the inimitable Gustavo Arellano(aka "The Mexican" of "Ask a Mexican!"), editor of the OC Weekly, to speechify. No matter the strength or weakness of the alternatives, Roquemore has always nixed the Mexican. Upon repeated Roquemorian rejections at IVC, Gustavo has given commencement addresses at UCLA, among other fine institutions of higher learning.

Glenn always hated the Mexican
     This year, Gustavo made it to the IVC committee’s winnowed list of faves. 
     But no. At a recent meeting, the President’s rep on the committee—chair Diane Oaks—essentially declared that the committee may not suggest Mr. Arellano. And so his name was taken off the list. The list was forwarded, sans Mexican.
     So tell me. What’s the point of having a process in which a committee, with wide representation, chooses the candidates and the Prez makes the final selection, if the Prez also determines who can be on the committee’s list?

When in doubt, jump out of an airplane and smile
Glenn loved to invite his pal, OC Sheriff and felon Mike Carona

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Roquemore's GONE

 "Our long institutional nightmare is over."

1:39 p.m.

Irvine Valley College Community:

I am writing to inform you about a conversation I had with Dr. Glenn Roquemore in the last hour. We agreed that he would be going on leave from his position as the President of Irvine Valley College effective immediately. While his employment status with the District is currently in transition, he will likely not be returning to his position as the College President. Dr. Roquemore has made many contributions to the Irvine Valley College community, and for his service and commitment to community college education, we are thankful.

In addition and effective immediately, Dr. Cindy Vyskocil will be serving as the Interim College President. Dr. Vyskocil is currently attending the annual Association of Chief Human Resources Officers (ACHRO) conference through Friday, October 25. She will report to Irvine Valley College on Monday, October 28 to assume her interim assignment.

On Friday, October 25, I will be making myself available on campus at IVC in the Administration Building. If you should have any questions or comments about the information in this email, or if there is anything else that you would like to discuss with me, please feel free to drop by and see me. Sandy Jeffries and Pamela Guillaume in the President's Office will know where to find me should you wish to stop by.

Cindy Vyskocil
(Vice Chancellor of Human Resources)

Kathleen F. Burke Ed.D., Chancellor
South Orange County Community College District
28000 Marguerite Parkway
Mission Viejo, CA 92692-3635

Agenda item for Monday’s board meeting (closed session): 1.3 Public Employee Employment, Evaluation of Performance, Discipline, Dismissal, Release

Maybe the next head to roll:

"Rotarian" Linda Fontanilla. Next?
We can hope.
Irvine Valley College president abruptly steps down after 17 years
(OC Reg)
…The district – which includes Saddleback and Irvine Valley colleges – has not publicly said why Roquemore stepped down, and Roquemore could not be reached for comment….

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Something in the air?



Call out the instigators
Because there's something in the air
We've got to get together sooner or later
Because the revolution's here, and you know it's right
And you know that it's right
We have got to get it together
We have got to get it together now
Lock up the streets and houses
Because there's something in the air
We've got to get together sooner or later
Because the revolution's here, and you know it's right
And you know that it's right
We have got to get it together
We have got to get it together now
Hand out the arms and ammo
We're going to blast our way through here
We've got to get together sooner or later
Because the revolution's here, and you know it's right
And you know that it's right
We have got to get it together
We have got to get it together now

Monday, October 21, 2019

IVC and DtB on Breitbart News!

     A MONTH or so ago my dean visited me to ask whether I had had an encounter with members of a conservative student club on campus.
     “Nope,” I said. I did recall having a brief and not unpleasant exchange with a guy manning a table for a Christian group. But that was perfectly amicable, I said.
     Soon thereafter, I was visited by a worried VP who informed me that IVC and this blog were now being discussed (targeted!) by Breitbart News.
     It was news to me.
     The upshot is this: some students were contemplating starting a “Turning Point USA” chapter here at IVC, and, during an effort at recruitment, they had some sort of unpleasant encounter with a professor—to wit, the professor told ‘em they “weren't gonna get laid.”
     "Oh, the humanity!"
     Well, if any such encounter occurred, it had nothing to do with me.
* * *
     I vaguely recall our reporting about Turning Point USA several years ago. Back in 2016, Rebel Girl posted an article from Inside Higher Ed (here) that explained that
     A new website is asking students … to “expose and document” professors who “discriminate against conservative students, promote anti-American values and advance leftist propaganda in the classroom.”
     The site, called Professor Watchlist, is not without precedent … There's also David Horowitz's 2006 book, The Professors: The 101 Most Dangerous Academics in America….
. . .
     Professor Watchlist, launched Monday, is a project of Turning Point USA. … In a write-up of the project, [PW’s founder, Charlie] Kirk said, “It’s no secret that some of America’s college professors are totally out of line” and that he often hears stories about “professors who attack and target conservatives, promote liberal propaganda and use their position of power to advance liberal agendas in their classroom. Turning Point USA is saying enough is enough. It’s time we expose these professors.”
     I don’t recall our saying anything particularly nasty about this group. We just reported their existence, their practices.
     Turning Point USA, like other so-called "conservative" groups, seems to participate in a kind of scam. It was perpetrated on Saddleback College instructor Margot Lovett several years ago (see The YAF brouhaha). The idea is to bait a college professor (or even college students) into assailing a poor, defenseless conservative. Get that on film or video, and then broadcast it, thereby disseminating proof of the dastardly oppression of conservatives on campuses—the conservative Paranoid Dream. Margot was videoed tearing down an improperly posted poster for some right-wing event on campus. (In truth, she was upholding a policy passed by our conservative board during the heyday of the ultra-right-wing SOCCCD trustee Tom Fuentes.) The video ended up on Breitbart, and Margot was soon the target of horrible (and violent) remarks and harassment by the usual suspects. This went on for some time, made her life a living hell. (Then there was the notorious viral video of OCC instructor Olga Perez Stable Cox in 2017; see OCC student suspended.)

* * *
     But let’s get back to now. The worried VP (when he first visited me about this matter) urged me not to write about this Brietbart business on the blog, and I agreed. I get it: we don't want IVC to be the whipping boy du jour of the right-wing lunatic crowd. Nobody wants that.
     But I think enough time has passed. I believe we can explain essentially what happened, what with the right-wingers preoccupied these days with Trump’s recent Ukraine/Syria meltdown.

     Here’s the article that appeared in Breitbart News on September 19th —plus some commentary in red:

Irvine Valley College Students Say Harassment of Conservatives Started in First Weeks of Semester
     Irvine Valley College students Lloyd Vincent Labriaga and Kyro Beshay told Breitbart News that they recently started a brand new Turning Point USA group on their campus, and have already been subjected to harassment by people on campus — one of whom is believed to be a professor — just a few weeks into the fall 2019 semester. Labriaga and Beshay spoke to host Alex Marlow in a Thursday interview on SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Daily for the show’s weekly TPUSA campus report segment.
     “We weren’t sure initially when that man approached us, [if he] was actually a professor, but we know for a fact that we were actually being recorded by [a professor],” said Beshay, who is the vice president of the new TPUSA group on campus. [So that’s professor A, the "harasser," and professor B, the recorder.]
     According to both Labriaga and Beshay, a man believed to be a professor [professor A] approached the conservative students — while they were recruiting members for their TPUSA group — and told the students that they would never “get laid.” Meanwhile, a professor [professor B] recorded the incident.
     [I would never say anything like that. Neither would the Reb.]
     “We assumed this person was a professor based on an anonymous source [“Anonymous”] that works at IVC,” added Labriaga, who is the TPUSA chapter president. “They basically gave us a list of professors to be mindful of — because of their very radical beliefs, and that they might actually penalize us academically.”
     [Golly, who’s this “Anonymous” source? And who are these “very radical” professors that Anon fingered? Not us, that’s for sure. —Unless feeling the Bern is “very radical.”]
     Labriaga and Beshay said they initially reacted to the incident by attempting to engage the man [A or B?] in a discussion, but that he was not interested. The students later reported the harassment [“You ain’t gonna get laid”] to the school’s dean, in hopes that his behavior “will be corrected.”
     [Hence the visit from my dean and then the VP, I guess.]
     “The reason why we had approached the dean,” said Beshay, “is because that sort of behavior is really unacceptable, but it’s something we saw a lot of at that [recruiting] session [at IVC] — we’ve had a lot of people come up to us with conflicting opinions — voicing them in a way that you would not [use] in an actual debate.”
     [I’m not sure I follow. Is Beshay referring to dire prophecies about not "getting laid" by “very radical” folks? That it?]
     The students added that the individual in question [which individual?] — along with two other professors — maintain a blog [that’s gotta be DtB], which they use to lambaste conservatives and Christians.
     [Well, no, neither the Reb nor I had any contact with these kids. And since when does the blog lambaste conservatives and Christians? –We “lambaste” some conservatives, I guess. Real knuckledraggers. Trump.]
     “We’re a really, really new chapter, we haven’t even gotten the opportunity to present a lot of activities to our club members [yet] — so, nothing we’ve done really [warrants] that sort of behavior” [“won’t get laid”], said Beshay, who added that just their presence on campus — promoting conservative ideas — has been enough to elicit these types of responses from people.
     “I feel like most conservative students who want to voice their opinion are afraid to do [sic] because they’re afraid that they will get penalized from the professor or ridiculed by them,” added Labriaga.
     [Not in a million years would the Reb our I “penalize” a student for being conservative. I might hand such a student a copy of Burke's Reflections on the Revolution in France. But that ain't harassment.]
     Labriaga also shared why he decided to get involved with conservative activism.
Given that I’ve lived in Orange County for most of my life, I know that there’s a lot of silent conservatives, especially in high school, because we’ve been [subjected] to this liberal education system, where even myself — during my health class — one time in high school, we were taught by one of the people that worked at Planned Parenthood, and — everyone in that class — we didn’t really believe her — I just had this feeling that we’re against what she believes, and this pro-Planned Parenthood agenda. And that’s why I feel like most young people nowadays are very silent about their beliefs, but I know they’re pretty much leaning to the right.
     “The reason I joined TPUSA,” said Beshay, “is that we weren’t able to have that civil debate — I was being told so often and so much that there wasn’t any debate because we couldn’t have that conflict with one side [?] — I wouldn’t be able to mention my point of views to anyone at school who had a conflicting point because I’m not sure of how they would react.”
     “And so,” added Beshay, “by joining TPUSA, I hoped to help facilitate that sort of civil debate in an environment where we’re not going to be worried about being attacked.” [END OF ARTICLE]
     —So that’s the article. A few days after it appeared, it was “retweeted” by Sarah Palin, or so the VP told me. Consequently, the article got a bump for a few days.
     But a month has passed and no disaster has befallen us.  -r

At IVC, one head rolls



We would like to inform you of the resignation of Bruce Hagan, Irvine Valley College Director of Technology Services. His resignation is effective immediately. With this notice, we will begin a nationwide search for his replacement. In the interim, Davit Khachatryan, Vice President for College Administrative Services, will serve as the point of contact until the position is filled.

Very Respectfully,

Glenn R. Roquemore, PhD
Irvine Valley College

Glenn loved to give Bruce prizes. Even recently.

8-14: do you regret all the lying?

✅ Trump Encourages Racist Conspiracy Theory on Kamala Harris’s Eligibility to Be Vice President NYT ✅ Orange County Sees Overall Coronavirus...

Goals and Values and Twaddle

blather: long-winded talk with no real substance*
The whole concept of MSLOs [measurable student learning outcomes] as the latest fad in education is somewhat akin to the now discredited fad of the '90's, Total Quality Management, or TQM. Essentially, the ACCJC adopted MSLOs as the overarching basis for accrediting community colleges based on their faith in the theoretical treatises of a movement.... After repeated requests for research showing that such use of MSLOs is effective, none has been forthcoming from the ACCJC [accreditors]. Prior to large scale imposition of such a requirement at all institutions, research should be provided to establish that continuous monitoring of MSLOs has resulted in measurable improvements in student success at a given institution. No such research is forthcoming because there is none….
The Accountability Game…., Leon F. Marzillier (Academic Senate for California Community Colleges, October, 2002)
In the summer of ’13, I offered a critique of the awkward verbiage by which the district and colleges explain their values, goals, and objectives —aka SOCCCD'S G&V (goals and values) blather.
I wrote a post each for the district, Saddleback College, and Irvine Valley College efforts. (See the links below.)
This verbiage—stated in terms of “values,” “missions,” “goals,” “visions,” and whatnot—is often badly written. It is sometimes embarrassingly trite.
It occasionally communicates something worthwhile.
No doubt you are familiar with the usual objections to jargon. Higher education, too, has its jargon—an irony, given typical college-level instruction in writing, which urges jargon eschewery.
Sure enough, SOCCCD G&V blather is riddled with jargon and with terms misused and abused. For instance, in the case of the district’s dubious blather, the so-called “vision” is actually a purpose. Why didn't they just call it that?
As one slogs through this prattle, one finds that "visions" tend to be awfully similar to “missions,” with which they are distinguished. The latter in turn are awfully similar to “goals,” which must be distinguished from “objectives.” But aren't goals and objectives pretty much the same thing?
These perverse word games will surely perplex or annoy anyone armed with a command of the English language. In fact, readers will be perplexed to the degree that they are thus armed. Illiterates, of course, will be untroubled.
Here's a simple point: the district and colleges’ G&V blather tends to eschew good, plain English in favor of technical terms and trendy words and phrases (i.e., it tends to be bullshitty and vague). Thus, one encounters such trendy terminological turds as “dynamic,” “diversity,” “student success,” and “student-centered.” Even meretricious neologisms such as ISLOs and “persistence rates” pop up, unexplained, undefended.
Does anyone see a transparency problem with all of this? Shouldn't the public, or at least the well educated public, be able to comprehend statements of the colleges' goals and values?
In the case of the district, to its credit, all it really seems to want to say is that it wants to teach well and it wants students to succeed. Admirable!
So why all the ugly, common-sense defying, buzzword-encrusted claptrap?

Districtular poppycock: our “vision” and our “mission” and our tolerance of twaddle - July 31, 2013

THEY BUZZ: Saddleback College's "Mission, Vision, and Values" - August 4, 2013

IVC’s vision, mission, and goals: nonsense on stilts - August 5, 2013

THE IRVINE VALLEY CHRONICLES: no ideas, just clichés & buzzwords - Sep 30, 2013

*From my Apple laptop's dictionary