Thank you for this article ["Flunk Factories," WW, Nov. 13, 2013]. I agree with School Board member Tom Koehler that Portland Public Schools' evaluation of management is slack.

If you are breathing and know how to hide problems, you'll continue to collect a paycheck at [district headquarters]. Poor administration and no oversight are ruining our schools.

The School Board is breaching its duty of care to PPS by failing to supervise and manage Superintendent Carole Smith. For her part, Smith has failed to manage her staff.

Incompetence is glaring at her, and she looks the other way and asks her political consultant to deal with it for her: "Please return with candy for me and the board to happily suck on."

Like a good boy, he does.


I have spent time at several of the community-based alternative high schools mentioned in the article, and I advocate for kids who end up there. These kids get a sense of belonging and understanding they are not able to get in our standard high schools.

And they often get more creative ways of learning. Simply throwing them back into environments run by the district that further marginalize them would be irresponsible and re-traumatizing.

—"Dana Brenner-Kelley"


Leaving a house unsecured for squatters to flop in is irresponsible of the banksters ["Haunted House," WW, Nov. 13, 2013]. The bank that foreclosed should be routinely billed by the city for security issues for criminal activity being conducted on the property. It should be part of crime-enforcement legislation.

Justin Dollard might have to take things into his own hands by boarding up the house and locking all the doors to deter squatters. Barring that, he should just keep calling the police. The criminals who flopped there (including one sex offender) are a danger to the community.


Three guys were squatting in an abandoned house. Cops rousted them out. And other than the house remaining vacant, that was pretty much the end of that.

Yet WW sees fit to go the busted route, and all the mindless lemmings predictably pile right on, as if there were something they actually needed to be worried about.

—"Damos Abadon"


If Charlie Hales were smart, he would pick up the phone and get the paving and sidewalk crews out there today ["127th and Hales," WW, Nov. 13, 2013].

Then he would go out and check the progress and make sure it gets done.

It's small stuff that counts. Come on, Charlie, for once be smart. Just do it.

—"Irving Berliner"

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