Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Blog Filtered from staff, students - SEE UPDATE BELOW

If you are a Neshaminy employee or student trying to view my blog, you've probably experienced some difficulties lately. For some unknown reason, the district's filtering system is blocking access. According to district officials, there is no intentional effort involved and this is just the random actions of the filtering software.

Unfortunately there is nothing to fix because the district is well within its rights to block access to any website, intentionally or otherwise, when their resources are in use. All staff and students can do is to log on to the web via their personal access to view this blog.

Update 4:45pm - 4/15/2008: A Neshaminy employee alerted me that a rival blog that criticizes me is visible to staff and students, which raises the question why my site is being filtered and the other is not (both use the same blog service). I have sent a query to our superintendent asking that this matter be investigated. Stay tuned for further developments.

Update 12:00pm - 4/17/2008: Neshaminy staff can now view this blog unobstructed by the District's filtering software. Administration has verified that no intentional, selective blocking occurred although they cannot explain why this blog was filtered while others were not. Apparently it was just the random act of the filtering software. Let me restate that the District would be within its rights to block this or any other blog, and I did not ask them to fix anything but rather confirm whether or not the filtering was intentional.

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

A coincidence? Neshaminy staff has been able to see your blog for months, and now magically it's being "filtered" just as you take a stand against politics in our hiring practices. Between recent personnel decisions and the filtering of this blog, we've been seeing lots of coincidences lately.

Anonymous said...

Don't believe it. The Eccles website is accessible to staff and you can read comments. What a coincidence -- the only topic with a comment is about Mr. O'Connor's daughter being employed by the district. Politics has attacked the inner workings of the distrcit more than anyone could imagine. More to follow.......

Anonymous said...

The question remains whether all blogs are being blocked or just this one. If the filter is blocking blogs, then all blogs should be inaccessible. If this is the only blog that is blocked then there is certainly some human involvement. This is no coincidence. Filters don't pick and choose which blogs to block, but IT personnel can. I've worked in 2 different school districts. One blocked all access to blogs and my current district does not block any blog, including my blog which all teachers and students can access from school or home.

Once you confirm that it is just this blog, the question is who is censoring this site?

Anonymous said...

This is just great. This is another way for the board president to limit critics of his poor management of the board. The blogs on this site out number his site 100 to 1 and most of them are pumping up Eccles and Webb. I do not have a problem if the best person is hired as long as all the facts are put forward. To sit there and not say what connections you have to a candidate is dishonest. A lot of people have friends or relative that work for the board and that information is out there but to attack a board members daughter while remaining silent on others is wrong. The only time the president seems to get involved is when he wants to place some friend or crony in the district. Don't be discouraged by the negative comments smearing Mr O'Connor or Dr Spitz since these come from a desperate few. Does the BCCT know of their latest dirty trick?

Someone Please Step Up said...

Filtering blogs, private agreements over personnel appointments, a superintendent with one foot out the door, an assistant superintendent who won't answer questions. You would think these are the major issues in our district, but there are some more important such as our test scores, closing schools, redistricting, taxes, etc. The measure of this board will not be the scandals but instead how they get beyond this point. It all starts at the top. Even if Mr. Eccles didn't do what he's been accused of, it's quite clear he has lost control of the board and administration. He must step down as president and allow someone else to take over. The question is which one of you board members will step up, and will the others get off their duffs and stand by you?

Joe Culligan said...

I agree with "step up". This is completely ridiculous. Everyone is playing politics with my children's future. I don't particularly care if all of you like each other or not. This board needs to get back to leading this district in the right direction and stop bickering amongst one another. You can not like each other and still work together to build the best district around.

someone please step up said...

Thanks for agreeing with me Joe but don't misunderstand the meaning of what I said. The ethics issues raised by O'Conner and Spitz are very important, and I didn't mean to suggest otherwise. My point is that for the board to move beyond this, someone else must lead, and do so effectively by building relationships with the other board members rather than destroying them. It appears Eccles is no longer in good standing with the board and he should relinquish command to someone who can build consensus with the board and administration. Equally as important, the silent members of the board have to start getting involved.

I agree with "Step Up" said...

Many good points raised above. This matter is serious but our board must rise above it. There is real doubt about the integrity of our board and administration, and this has been building for several years. Spitz and O'Connor have started the ball rolling by standing up to unethical behavior, and now the ENTIRE board must respond. Not with an exhaustive investigation that won't yield any results, but rather with a change in leadership. Looks like we'll be getting a new superintendent soon, and we should have a new board president as well. With a fresh start, the board should agree to move forward, make improvements to policies within the district (such as personnel), and focus on the issues important to everyone in the district. Last Tuesday's meeting was very painful to watch, but if the board can now move forward in a positive step, then that brief moment of pain will have served a useful purpose.

Anonymous said...

If this district believes it can hide the truth from staff by filtering a blog, it won't work because we've known for years many of the things going on with the school board and our administrators. Thanks to people like Mr. O'Connor now the rest of the community can finally see what staff has known about for years.
Thank you for your integrity, William, and this wonderful blog.

Anonymous said...

Good news, Mr. O'Connor. I can view your blog without the filter stopping me.

Welcome Back said...

Nice to have your blog back. I appreciate reading what community members have to say about our district, even sometimes when it isn't pleasant.

Anonymous said...

Someone enlighten the rest of us. What exactly has gone on for years that you staff members keep talking about?

Joe Culligan said...

"Step Up" I could not have said it better myself. You make a lot of great points and I for one am in total agreement. Hopefully someone will pay attention to what is being said here.

Step Down said...

I agree with "Step Up" that our board president should step down. Something isn't quite right with our board and it's been that way for a couple of years. If the president can't lead the group beyond this point, then he should allow someone else who can to take over. If you're reading this Mr. Eccles, please don't concern yourself with proving your innocence or retaliating against O'Connor and Spitz. Do the right thing for this board and this community, and STEP DOWN. PLEASE!

Anonymous said...

When the board is focused on the major issues they seem to function ok. There are some other things going on that are hurting this board, and they could be helped if Mr. Eccles would step down.

Come on Mr. President - be a Mensch and do the right thing!

Anonymous said...

Glad to have your blog back. It's such a great source of information. Please don't get discouraged by the lack of support from your fellow board members. I don't know why they just sat there and did nothing but you did the right thing. Keep up the great work!

Pianomom said...

I don't know if your blog was intentionally filtered, so I cannot judge what happened. I don't know if Mr. Eccles interfered with the intent of furthering the career of his political allies, but clearly I can judge that he acted without board consensus when he admitted he had given his opinion to Dr. Muenker. The pubic should not be consumed trying to figure out why people do what they do, but intstead we must judge them on their actions.

Unfortunately I cannot judge the actions of most of our school board in this matter because they've taken no action. They sit, they watch, they shake their heads in disgust, but they do nothing to resolve the dispute.

It's time that the silent 4 started taking a stand. Maybe if you had acted earlier when there were problems, this personnel disaster would never have happened. People in power only abuse that authority when they think they can get away with it. Shame on you for turning your heads.

Anonymous said...

IT'S A DONE DEAL.. It seems that the decision to close schools and move students is a done deal. Ask anyone at Neshaminy Middle and they are prepping everything to close the school. I thought the idea to close the school this year was going to be discussednot just rushed and be closed. All the reasons for closing the schools are still there butnone of the planning is in place. The students were originally slated to go to the high school, talk is there isn't enough space in the refurbed highschool,but the school isn't done. Shouldn't the planned closing be delayed until all the pieces are in place? Not once in this entire process have I heard the powerful board members mention the effect on the educational process this haphazard planning will have on the students. It all has to do with money. What bothers me the most about this is why hasn't this been made public by the board and the "superintendant in waiting. What effect will this change have on the special education students whos life will be thrown into mess. The rush to save money may like the refurb high may cost you way more in the future... Has the Stone Meadows Farm property which is now open for sale and development been taken into consideration when closing NMS or will we spend millions later reopening it and sacrificing the students now in the middle school because of this mess.