The Examiner U-46 News Feed
Teacher draws criticism for violating U-46 policy
By Seth Hancock
School District U-46 policy states: “All District employees are expected to maintain high standards in their school relationships, to demonstrate integrity and honesty, to be considerate and cooperative and to maintain professional relationships.”
That policy apparently doesn’t apply if for those that support U-46 CEO Tony Sanders as Bartlett High School teacher Gary Lorber violated that policy twice in levying personal attacks, without any substance, on both an Examiner reporter as well as Rick Newton, a taxpayer who helps fund Lorber’s salary and benefits, at two straight Board of Education meetings.
Lorber was even part of a group honored by the board during its meeting’s accent on achievement portion on Monday, Oct. 3. This was the meeting directly after the Sept. 12 and Sept. 26 meetings when Lorber violated the district’s policy.
After the Sept. 12 meeting, Lorber was given his say in The Examiner’s story headlined “U-46 meeting regresses into free speech debate” while this newspaper responded in that story by pointing out he offered no actual evidence for his attacks on stories headlined “Is teaching mandate of U-46 schools correct?” and “U-46 discussion focuses on child values teaching.”
On Sept. 26 Lorber, who was apparently upset that The Examiner accurately portrayed Sanders as apparently not believing in a “free and open society” based on his recent actions of making decisions behind closed doors and ignoring concerns from the public after those decisions were made public, again made personal attacks and claimed he emailed the paper seeking an “entire edition” so “I could begin to do a better job with my critique.”
The Examiner did not receive such an email, and any such statement would make it appear to be a tacit admission that Lorber did not read the stories that he originally attacked. It should also be noted that copies of The Examiner are readily available at municipal libraries and other public offices throughout the area.
While Lorber and The Examiner have had their say, Newton had not until he spoke during public comments at the Oct. 3 board meeting. Instead of personally attacking, Newton stuck to substance and noted the statement before public comments that “comments cannot address individuals, otherwise they may be called out of order.”
“Apparently, the operative word there is ‘may’ since an employee of the district has been allowed to defy that rule blatantly at two successive meetings, and you as a board said nothing,” Newton said. “Is that what you call adhering to process, or is it simply there to defend your biases? Your silence spoke volumes. Once again, and as Orwell’s Animal Farm commentary on totalitarianism stated, it would appear that ‘all animals are equal, but some are more equal than others.’”
Newton added: “This employee’s public attacks on private citizens and repeated insults to a reporter were made simply because they hold different values and beliefs from those of this employee. And why do you say nothing? It’s because you share the same disdain for anyone who has the audacity to fundamentally disagree with your policies and decisions. While this employee feigned contempt for the reporter’s writing style, do you honestly believe he would have taken that approach if he agreed with the article? Just like this board’s liberal majority, this employee chooses to advance the practices of Saul Alinsky, the leftist radical whose 12th rule for radicals is ‘Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.’ God forbid this board should have the courage and desire to hold open exchanges of ideas.”
Editor’s note: The Examiner values the First Amendment rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution to all citizens. It is imperative that all individuals right to an opinion is respected had their right to voice that opinion in a public forum such as a school board meeting be supported regardless if it is in agreement or disagreement with its audience.