When Gale Ladehoff, principal of the Clear Horizons Early College High School in the Clear Creek Independent School District (and Official Woman), assigned a student to Saturday school because of excessive absences, she may not have known that the absences were due to a medical condition. She may not have known that this unwarranted discipline would cause the family logistical difficulties.
The student’s father met with Ms. Ladehoff and tried to explain the situation to her. She was not interested. I’ll let the student’s dad, Houston family lawyer Ron of Ron’s Insanity, pick it up here:
Tyrants have no appreciation for dialog. [Principal Gale Ladehoff] says that “rules” must be enforced. I, in my usual tactful and discerning manner, tell her that this is simply asinine. She obviously has no appreciation of my attitude. While there was no real attempt by her to dialog, things really break down when I tell her that i don’t give a damn about her rules.
She tells me the meeting is over. I’m standing there dumbfounded. “You’re stopping the meeting because I disagree with you?” I ask. Apparently once a tyrant declares that the meeting is over, you suddenly become persona non grata and become subject to forced removal. Her associate asks, “should I call security?” My sarcastic response to her was, “oh yes, call security, because I’m obviously a threat.”
Well, tyrants, when having their authority questioned, tend to rely on armed force, so security was called. Fortunately for me, by the time they arrived, I’d already left and was trying to get my son and his belongings rounded up for the ride home.
Now, I have a major problem with someone calling the police on someone just trying to have a discussion with a public official in a public place. So, when I get home, I email the tyrant, er I mean principal, and tell her that I am calling a meeting with her superior regarding this incident.
The response to my email? While I was expecting a response telling me the time and date of the conference, what I received was a note from the principal that my son was now suspended for 3 days and will be assigned to a disciplinary alternate educational placement (known in the educational establishment lingo as DAEP). Yes, disagree with the tyrant and we ship the family members off to the concentration camp.
We’ve all had to deal with the petty bureaucrat who, unaccountable to the customers, feels free to abuse his power. The smaller the kingdom, the bigger the tyrant. Gale Ladehoff felt free to retaliate against Ron by putting Ron’s kid in DAEP because a) Ron can’t fire her; and b) nobody else was watching.
She’s wrong on the second count, at least. Lots and lots of people are watching. Even if nobody else links to this post, 150 or so people will see it. If it pisses one of them off, a thousand people will see it. And this post, as well as Ron’s, will be around forever.
Five years from now someone — a prospective boyfriend, a prospective employer — is going to Google Gale Ladehoff’s name. And what’s going to turn up? Ron’s post.