Sunday, January 23, 2011

Mother Jailed For Sending Kids to Wrong School District

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action

An Ohio mother of two was sentenced to 10 days in jail and placed on three years probation after sending her kids to a school district in which they did not live. Kelley Williams-Bolar was sentenced by Judge Patricia Cosgrove on Tuesday and will begin serving her sentence immediately.

The jury deliberated for seven hours and the courtroom was packed as the sentence was handed down. She was convicted on two counts of tampering with court records after registering her two girls as living with Williams Bolar's father when they actually lived with her. The family lived in the housing projects in Akron, Ohio, and the father’s address was in nearby Copley Township.

Additionally, Williams-Bolar’s father, Edward L. Williams, was charged with a fourth-degree felony of grand theft, in which he and his daughter are charged with defrauding the school system for two years of educational services for their girls. The court determined that sending their children to the wrong school was worth $30,500 in tuition.

When I read about this case, a few thoughts went through my mind. First, it’s clear that the court is trying to make Kelley Williams-Bolar into an example. Even the judge in the case, Patricia Cosgrove, said that her sentence was appropriate ''so that others who think they might defraud the school system perhaps will think twice.''

Secondly, it’s interesting how courts find it convenient to make someone into an example when they happen to be poor and black. I’d love to see how they prosecute wealthy white women who commit the same offense. Oh, I forgot: Most wealthy white women don’t have to send their kids to the schools located near the projects.

Third, I’m not sure why the court is treating this law-abiding mom like a thug who ran into a building with a shotgun and robbed the district of $30,000. Instead, they could simply subtract the amount it costs for her kids to go to the second school from the amount that would be spent for them to attend the first one. I’m sure the difference would still be substantial, since American educational apartheid dictates that schools in poorer neighborhoods are of significantly less quality than other schools. The racial divisions within American schools are nothing less than a blatant and consistent human rights violation and should certainly be treated as such.

A final interesting blow by Judge Cosgrove that reflects the experience of marginalized African Americans in the criminal justice system relates to Williams-Bolar’s quest to obtain a teaching degree. The single mother was in school studying to become a teacher so that she could create a better life for her girls. But that won’t happen for her family now, given that the judge has all but shut the door on her chance to fulfill her dream:

''Because of the felony conviction, you will not be allowed to get your teaching degree under Ohio law as it stands today,'' the judge said. ''The court's taking into consideration that is also a punishment that you will have to serve.''

This case is a textbook example of everything that remains racially wrong with America’s educational, economic and criminal justice systems. Let’s start from the top: Had Ms. Williams-Bolar been white, she likely would never have been prosecuted for this crime in the first place (I’d love for them to show me a white woman in that area who’s gone to jail for the same crime). She also is statistically not as likely to be living in a housing project with the need to break an unjust law in order to create a better life for her daughters. Being black is also correlated with the fact that Williams-Bolar likely didn’t have the resources to hire the kinds of attorneys who could get her out of this mess (since the average black family’s wealth is roughly 1/10 that of white families). Finally, economic inequality is impactful here because that’s the reason that Williams-Bolar’s school district likely has fewer resources than the school she chose for her kids. In other words, black people have been historically robbed of our economic opportunities, leading to a two-tiered reality that we are then imprisoned for attempting to alleviate. That, my friends, is American Racism 101.

This case is also an example of how racial-inequality created during slavery and Jim Crow continues to cripple our nation to this day. There is no logical reason on earth why this mother of two should be dehumanized by going to jail and be left permanently marginalized from future economic and educational opportunities. Even if you believe in the laws that keep poor kids trapped in underperforming schools, the idea that this woman should be sent to jail for demanding educational access is simply ridiculous.

128 comments:

AngelaD said...

This is an outrage. Is there any action that we can take? Folks in Akron and Summit County need to call, email and write this prosecutor and judge. The prosecutor is an elected official and I believe the judge is too.

Anonymous said...

As a mother, I'm outraged on two levels about this issue.
a) That any mother who wants a better life for their children would be charged with a FELONY for doing so. This mother should have simply been told that the children will need to either physically move into the school district, either by the mother moving there, or having the father take custody of the children, or requiring the children to be moved back to their physical school district. This is an outrage.
b) Where I have a problem with this article is focusing on the issue because she is African American. I agree with you that this is definitely an outrage that this woman is being given a Felony conviction. Is there any chance of having this person contact an attorney who will take this on a pro-bono case?

Unique said...

Dr. Watkins

What is the solution? What can we....I...do?

StevieZ said...

This kind of asinine, racist ruling makes my blood boil. I find it so infuriating. And people say racism doesn't exist. People who say that are either blind, or prefer not to see it. It appears that the judge is saying you (and your children) do not deserve equal opportunity, and we will make sure you never do. Yes she is being made an example... black people know your place!

Anonymous said...

Not the first such case:
http://www.dailyfreeman.com/articles/2010/11/09/blotter/doc4cd8af79de09e833387262.txt

I can't confirm the ethnicity of the woman in this case, which probably means she's white. This isn't really a racial issue, it's an issue about poverty and school systems, regardless of race.

atrapp said...

I'm not necessarily going to pull the race card here because if the father is black, then it stands to reason that the neighborhood is diverse. No issue there. However, it is a travesty against the poor. What really doesn't make sense is that the father is paying taxes in the district of choice so the girls' education was being paid for. She obviously had a bubble gum attorney.

Anonymous said...

That is so wrong, We all should be able to send our children to school were we want to, then the schools that are not doing a good job would have to improve or close. I can't believe this mother is being punished for trying to give her children a better life. The Judge should have to send her children to the school, that this mother did not want hers in.

Claudia Putnam said...

This is truly ridiculous as I know plenty of split households in my area who do this... basically pretend the kid lives with whichever parent has access to the better school. No one even thinks twice about it--I doubt they even know it's wrong.

Chef Luna said...

This is so offensive, they are really going jail this woman for trying to get her children a better education? With all the crime, homelessness and other issues happening in this country a woman trying to give her children a better life should be commended. I am really sad that the court honestly finds this an acceptable solution.

Chad Goller-Sojourner said...

"the idea that this woman should be sent to jail for demanding educational access is simply ridiculous."

She isn't being sent to jail for demanding educational access, she's being sent to jail for fraud. A Fraud committed by lots of parents each year, but that's not how the court system works. While I commend the length this women went for her daughter I see this as an act of civil disobedience,and part of becoming involved in CD is doing the time. Hopefully this will bring some attention to the disparities in public education. But to act like a ten day sentence for two counts of fraud that went on for two years is nothing is simply pouring gas on the wrong fire.

Leisa Monique said...

I don't have words in my vocabulary to accurately articulate my anger at what I just read! There are so many issues with this story: sending a mother to jail for trying to provide. Better educational opportunities to her children, taking these children's mother away from them for 10 days (who is going to care for the children while their mother serves undeserved jail time?), stripping this woman of an opportunity to better her and her children's lives, an added expense to the state to try and convict this woman for something that could have been resolved some other way... I could go on!

This judge needs to be removed from the bench immediately! She clearly is biased in her decisions and there is no telling how many "victims" have come through her court and are now serving unjust sentences!

Panoplia Soljah said...

I wonder what some of your more hostile fans will say about this situation. Sad story, I will definitely be following it.

Anonymous said...

This is crazy... That judge has set up a family to fail.

DANIEL G. said...

This is a grave injustice that should be addressed. Although I can hardly believe the tale, I believe it is happening here in America. The land of the free.

What can I do to help? I feel so helpless and distraught over such discrimination. As a white man, all I can say is that I am sorry that other white people are doing this. This mother should be rewarded and honored!!

Please let me know what I can do.

Dan Koller, DVM, JD.

cheryl said...

Why don't African American Educators form a study group and find out why this $30,000 dollar difference exists between the 2 school districts?
Are the schools funded by state and federal funds as well as city funds? Who and how was the line drawn?
How much money went to the good school district and how much to the average district from the last census? Was the appropriate amount given to the average district?
It is mind boggling to me that black Educators have not been on top of the race for dollars from the Census.
In 2008I looked at the Census figures going back to 1987. There were 19 million Hispanics and 29 million African Americans. In 2000 the census showed 41 million AA. Recently I read their are only 36 million Americans. Who changed the numbers? You know what that means. All of us were not counted. (52+ million Hispanics)? Why were the Census takers sworn to secrecy?

Our Communities will not get much of the $400 billion. The Census was not written correctly and no one spoke up about it. It makes me wonder how long our communities have been slighted. Then there's the housing foreclosure issue. No tax revenue for our communities mean no communities.
Then there's the Dream Act. They want us to pay for the education of illegal foreigners but her own children can't get a decent education. (they meaning the Republican governors who invited them to come
Rick Perry being one-he gained 4 more seats)
This is where we mothers, fathers and our children have been left, in court, crying, pockets gouged and on the way to jail. We expect those in positions of influence and or authority to speak for us. But no one is-and only the silence screams. It is clear that Obama is not on our team.

Attorneymom said...

Blank stare.

Jillian Raftery said...

This is AWFUL. I know many kids from my high school in Bellevue, WA who registered their address as living with grandparents or aunts/uncles to secure registration to better schools. It is unthinkable that such a harsh punishment should fall on such a dedicated mother.

It really does look like there's an element of racism here, which is an absolute OUTRAGE. Coming from a suburban background where I wasn't aware of injustices like these... how can I contribute and stop this from happening to good hard-working people??

AnnieNZ said...

And this in a country which celebrates MLK's birthday rather than acknowledge that his dream has not yet been fulfilled.

Ron said...

I'm like AngelaD. Lets do more than get angry. LETS GET BUSY! I'm in Atlanta, but people in Akron need to be raising hell a mile high. Get this on the national news. March, do something. People will only do what you will let them get away with. Contact Oprah, somebody

Gary said...

We live in a country of the rule of law. This person broke the law, period. Is the message we want to send our youth it is fine to ignore the law? It is fine to lie in order to get your way? This story is written Using the common method to divide us and offers no suggestions for solutions. I see angry outrage at this story, but see very few who are committed to action. If this story angers you, find out the WHOLE story and not just from this source. There is usually more than meets the eye and there are 2 sides to every story. Maybe if enough of us turn off American Idol and pursue social justice, we might change the world. My bet is on lethargy, sure, we'll hear some bitching for a bit and wait for someone else to solve the problem - but in the end 2 young ladies are being denied a fair education because of some stupid laws probably emplaced to prevent families from moving talented athletes from one district to another.

Schürl said...

That this occurred horrifies me. I feel like a mother should have the rights to send her kids to a better school as this one did, and I don't think she should have to do anything but perhaps pay the difference in educational costs--though I'm tempted to say that this is an unreasonable cost.

Anyone who thinks this isn't a racial issue doesn't realize quite how many barriers exist to "the American Dream." As a university writing instructor, I see the vicious cycle of this discrimination every day. Affirmative action gets minority students into college, but the schools they come from often don't have the resources to fully prepare them for college. Some of my brightest students drop out just because it's frustrating to have to work so hard to catch up.

This mother recognized what it would take to help her girls have access to further educational options beyond high school. She was doing what seems to me a scary but admirable thing in trying to cheat the system, and working against those barriers herself by obtaining her own degree. The felony charge in particular outrages me. A woman who understands what is really wrong with education as this woman does deserves to be a teacher.

satsang said...

While I agree with everyone in that there is no reason to charge and convict a mother for fundamentally striving to improve the quality of life for her children, the thought that crossed my mind is 'why can't we work harder and smarter to make the schools in our communities better?' If we did this, and we did this during the Jim Crow era especially in cities like Indianapolis, IN where black high schools like Crispus Attucks had more Ph.Ds and MAs and MSs on staff than anywhere in Indiana, then urban (black) schools wouldn't be necessarily synonymous with marginal.

ShadowCanAm said...

If the Kids was star althletes the money made at the gate would offset or surpass the $30,500 tuition. Can we say Prep Schools,AAU Basketball,NCAA Basketball and Football !?!?!

Anonymous said...

Please! Though I do not agree with the harshness of the sentence and taking away the mother's ability to become a teacher this is not a racial matter. As someone else commented clearly if the grandfather lived in the "white district" then it's not a "WHITE district." They broke the law, just because she is "black" doesn't give her a free ticket to do as she pleases. The courts should not have to fear serving justice where it is due because of someone's race. This matter never would have made it this far if the mother and grandfather were truthful. Why did the mother not go to live with her father and take the girls? Why did she not let her girls live with their grandfather? They also could have petitioned for the district to grant them permission to attend a school outside of their own district. There were other options. They knew what they were doing was illegal and they chose to do it anyway, that makes them criminals. Not to mention that there are WHITE people who live in the "projects" too. There are also plenty of white people who live in trailer parks. The difference is that they either petition to send their children to another district, send their children to the schools that they are legally supposed to go to, or unfortunately have not been caught YET. How about we discuss how there is BLACK entertainment television or BLACKsingles.com. If there were a television station called WHITE entertainment television or a website called WHITEsingles.com they would be sued and they would be viewed as racist. If there is to be equality then it needs to be EQUAL. Back tot he matter at hand, there were a few other issues with this post; NO the judge did not treat her "like a thug that who ran into a building with a shot gun and robbed the district of $30,000" if they had, her sentence would have been much worse and NO she is NOT a "law-abiding mom" because she broke the law. Lets stop being over dramatic and start looking at what really happened and how these people made a choice and are responsible for that choice. Again, I believe that the judge was harsh and should not have taken away the mother's ability to become a teacher but she committed a felony and there is no way to avoid that truth. There are plenty of cases however where WHITE people have been given harsh sentences and been made an example of as well. Please stick to the facts.

Art of Youth Development Practice said...

You've presented the problem. Thank you. Now: What can people do?

Alex said...

http://www.ohio.com/news/114409139.html

This news article writes up that Judge Cosgrove wrote a letter to the Ohio Board of education asking them "not to suspend" Ms. Williams-Bolar's current or future license.

This does not, however, address the issues that you raised of the inequity of the system and treatment of Ms. Williams-Bolar in the first place.

PB Short said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PB Short said...

Ohio is a RACIST state; period...

This is the only reason why I left Ohio 20 years ago...this state has 36 prisons to handle nine (9) million people, and 90% of the inmates are black...

What can we do?

We can stop spending our money in white owned and foreign owned businesses in our neighborhoods and eslewhere...

We need to get rid of the mentality of I have to have what the white man have (cars, jewelry, tattoos, etc.)...

We need to come together as brothers and sisters, and quit allowing this racist government to divide us mentally, financially, and racially...

This woman did not have a jury of her peers...instead, she had an all white jury from Akron, Ohio who did exactly what the prosecutor ask them to do, and the judge sat there and allow this to happen...

To show how the force of spirit law works; the government pass the gun laws in the 1990's to ensure that anyone with a felony cannot purchase a gun...this was created to keep black men & women from owning guns...but do you see what is happening?

These white people are killing each other everyday...they are strung-out on drugs...

Last weekend, white people were shooting the police left and right, and the week before, the Arizona congress woman, a federal judge, ans others were shot...and they are going to use my TAX dollars to save her nasty racist behind (Arizona is a RACIST state)...

This is their justice for their in-justice...

We need to stand up and fight for our rights...and keep our money within our own community...

Obama gave one trillion dollars to corporate criminals...and now these white people hate him...he saved their jobs...this week he will speak on job creation, and it has nothing to do with hiring black people...because the corporate criminals will not hire us...

If it takes giving a tax break to corporate criminals to get them to hire blacks, then they can keep their jobs...they are using my tax dollars to hire me; WTF?

As long as the American black man and woman continue to worship zeus, oops, jesus, or any other religion, then they have us by the balls for life...

As long as the black woman feel like she must be loyal to their white pimps, then we will never come together as a race in this country...yes, I said that because this white racist government gives you a check once a month, hire you to work for some government agency, and all you do is mis-treat your black sons & daughters...

Go to any government agency and you will see that black people are working the front lines...when these woman get off well-fare, human services assistance, they cannot and will not get hired by corporate america...but yet, the government hired them to mis-treat us when we come into the office for assistance...

Only in America...may your GOD continue to kick you...

Art of Youth Development Practice said...

Here's a fact: Just because something is the "truth" doesn't mean it is right or just. Yes, she broke a law (fact). The issue here is whether the penalty (albeit) the "law" is just. Just because something is deemed a felony does not mean it should be a felony. That's what the underlying issue is about. Can you understand that?

ohsaintmarie said...

A petition has been started to communicate support for the reduction of Ms. Williams-Bolar's sentencing upon appeal. Please sign and pass it along:

http://criminaljustice.change.org/petitions/view/calling_for_reduction_on_appeal_of_ms_kelly_williams-bolar_unfair_sentencing_for_fraud_and_theft

TStee said...

Judge has now petition the Board of Education to overlook the felony conviction...smh

http://www.akronnewsnow.com/news/itemdetail.asp?ID=43576

Seameka said...

My eyes heart will not let me believe what my eyes are seeing! This is totally outrageous! I can understand this mom all to well. I live in Chicago and the schools depending on your area is horrible. Luckily my daughter does attend one of the better public schools, but even some of those teachers and parents act as if they don't really want black children to attend. This is blatant racism and this case needs to be appealed and taken to a higher court system.

Johnette said...

I am so outraged! I, like many others want to help! What this decision could accomplish is keeping these girls who obviously have a parent that understands the importance of education from receiving an education that will allow them to reach their potential. I think we as a community need to reverse the decision of the court with our dollars by setting up a scholarship for these two children to go to the private school of their mother's choice! So the court doesn't win in keeping these girls from getting a quality education!
We need to collectively get together and make a statement! This is not tolerable!
That judge thought she was sending us mothers striving to give our children educational opportunity a message... now let's send them one! If anyone has contact information for this family or their lawyer I would appreciate any leads. I will organize, throw benefit concerts... whatever.
As a single mother, spending money that I don't have to send my daughter to a private catholic school because I am painfully aware that the schools in my community are not preparing our children to be successful, I identify all too much with this mother.
I NEED to help! I HAVE TO DO SOMETHING!

DUNX said...

The judge wanted to make an example out of her, so let's make an example out of her. Let us hold up this example and show what the people will do in the face of injustice. So what do we do? One thing I would like to see done would be to start an education fund for both the girl and the mother. The girl, so she could at least go to a private school instead of her school in the projects, and the mother so she can smoothly transition careers, seeing as she's not going to be able to pursue teaching anymore. Is anyone on board for this? If so, email me at IHaveABeat@gmail.com. If enough people will contribute, we can undo the damage the justice system has done to these two, and show them just how powerful the people can be.

Jessica said...

I am white. I have friends who're Sudanese, Brazilian and Asian. I have family who're black. Please keep sharing this story! Someone who sees this is bound to know how to get this to the president. At the very least, there will be an awesome attorney who would be willing to represent this family pro-bono to have this mother's conviction overthrown. I have no doubt in my mind that if I sent my children to a public school I'd want this mom as a teacher to my kids. What we really need to do is get this to the appropriate people and make an example out of this judge! That's what really needs to happen. Why should these kids suffer just because their parents aren't wealthy? We're not wealthy, but our kids are not suffering. Education is a right for EVERYONE. This family has my prayers.

Love from Nebraska.

Corazon said...

Ok she could've went a different route to have her kids attend this school but to fine her $30,500 are you serious is it really about the money? Then keep her from pursuing her dreams to become a teacher and make a better life for her family. Too harsh! 10 day jail sentence oh come on I think $30,000 was enough the rest was a bit too much. I've seen people do worse things and get less sentencing. So how is it possible that what she did would add up to all that they slapped her with? It's not about Black and White it's about working class. Its ridiculous. And if she can't practice teaching in that state then I suggest she moves. Not much can be done now it seems.

Jazzy said...

This is Crazy, if there was more good schools in our black communities ppl wouldn't have to do this. I have two kids and I'm not ashamed to say that neither one of them goes to a school in our district, because they are "F" schools. Wht would I want my kids to attend a school where the school gpa is an "f" I send both my kids to outside schools so they can be better educated.

Thula7 said...

I live in Minnesota where we have open enrollment. I'm astonished that such a case would even be brought up, let alone taken to court. There is now way she should be barred from getting a teaching degree. This is completely insane. My heart goes out to this woman and her children.

Janeene said...

I will acknowledge that the mother and the child's grandfather broke the law, and there should be consequences, but A FELONY?!!! Why couldn't she plead to a misdemeanor? I live in NY, so I am unsure how education is paid for in Ohio, but here the state gives funds to the school district based on the number enrolled and on how many actually show up each day for school. The rest comes from local property taxes. Does that district actually get $15K per year per student from local taxes? If the school district received funding for the child from the state and the father(the child's grandfather)pays his property taxes how is it that the school district lost any money? The offense is against the taxpayers, not the school district, because they paid for one extra child. The grandfather is probably paying taxes at a reduceed rate due to his age, so maybe they would make him pay a penalty or tuition. Kids here can go to another school district by paying tuition. If the mother lived in the district she would not have paid any property taxes anyway because she is too low income to own a home. If she rented or qualified for a subsidy or public housing, chances are no or limited taxes would be paid. So where is the damage? The mother should move to NY. White collar criminals who falsified documents and have embezzelled hundreds of thousands of dollars get probation and pay restitution. She probably got jail due to her inability to pay restitution. I would tell her to give up on teaching and get a law degree instead. I think an appeal is absolutely necessary. This judge all but assured that she will be receiving public funds for a long time. What will that cost the community? By the way, where is the child's father?

GGirl said...

When reading this story, I don't know what upsets me more: the fact that there's a $30,000 discrepancy between the schools, the fact that the father lives in the district and was already paying taxes there or the fact that the judge basically wanted to ruin any chances of this mother making a better life for her kids by almost eliminating her chances at becoming a teacher. And to be honest, even as a teacher she could very well be living exactly where she currently lives. Not like she'd be making all that much money.

Like another commenter said, it happens all the time with split families. How outrageous to make an example out of her. I hope the word spreads and brings national attention to this story. We have to get proactive people. There's too much at stake to continue to let ignorant people take control of our schools and education.
-DBG

shizumataka said...

where did you find this story? Is there an article elsewhere? I have searched all the major news sites and I have not come across it anywhere :(

Witch Mom said...

I am shocked and saddened. If districts were equal in the first place, she wouldn't have to do something "illegal" (and why IS it illegal, anyway?).

Sickening.

Taking the Long Way said...

http://criminaljustice.change.org/petitions/view/calling_for_reduction_on_appeal_of_ms_kelly_williams-bolars_unfair_sentencing_for_fraud_and_theft

Sign this petition and send it to the officials involved.

jasdye said...

The Anonymous people here are having conniptions...

but as to this more-or-less similar case recorded here: http://www.dailyfreeman.com/articles/2010/11/09/blotter/doc4cd8af79de09e833387262.txt:

"Chapman, who had been treasurer of the Cold Spring Elementary School’s Parent Teacher Association, had been arrested in September and charged with the felonies of grand larceny and forgery on accusations she stole about $3,000 from the PTA, police said."

So, it's quite a bit different...

knudsen web. said...

I, too, am disgusted about the harsh punishment. However, the article itself has strayed from the issue. This is NOT a racial issue. This is not a "black" woman being punished for sending her chilren to a "white" school. This is a case where a "lower income resident" lied to send her girls to an "affluent" (NOT "white") school. Would I do the same thing as her, hell yeah. But, I would also be very careful in writing an article about this staying focused on the issue at hand...why are all schools not equal? How can struggling parents who want the best for their children, and deserve the best for their children, able to provide for that without needing to break the law? If we are to be a nation that does not look at color then stop looking at color!! Stop printing articles about racial diversity when the article context is actually about economic diversity.

Eric said...

I think 4 things need to happen.

1. Every black media need to nationally publicize this just as they do so call injustice to the white community.

2. We all need to find a way to contact Kelly Williams and send our letter of support to her.

3. Every African American and non African American person that feel for Kelly's misguided sentence should send at least a dollar with the letter of support for Kelly to hire a better attorney and appeal this hidious decision by Judge Patricia Cosgrove.

4. Given its MLK month heading into black history month, let's remind this injustice system we will not tolerate or revisit the past ever again.

Eric Murphy
Oakland, CA

John said...

Anyone who tries to claim that poor people are poor simply because they are lazy or chose to be poor need to see this. This is the best example I can imagine of how our society works to keep the poor in their place - regardless of race.

Rochelle said...

Stop telling us these stories that do nothing but infuriate us Dr. Boyce. With all of the connections you have which is more than the average and as a leader in the black community, don't just post the problem..that's easy. What can we do to help!? We need leadership here and we will act.

Divine Mrs D said...

I know people are posting it, but maybe someone who is about to post will see the petition. Change.org has a petition going. Sign it!: http://criminaljustice.change.org/petitions/view/calling_for_reduction_on_appeal_of_ms_kelly_williams-bolar_unfair_sentencing_for_fraud_and_theft

Lee said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lee said...

Just sad - Plain out sad ! Judge knew she couldn't get her teaching license in the state also, if charged with the felony :(

Tokyo said...

Unfortunately what we are seeing here is something that Jonathan Kozol wrote so eloquently about in his book, Savage Inequalities. Racial or better yet, class, division starts early and continues on in our educational system. If we are still under the impression that Brown v. Board of Education court decision nullified everything then this article shows us the quite different reality. First, school funding is a complex and confusing system...also tied to property taxes. So districts in which less people own property the educational opportunities will plain be different than in more property tax rich districts. Under No Child Left Behind, the inequality only grows. Schools deemed failing do not necessarily get more funding to provide better academic opportunities to their students, but year after year are expected to grow with outdated curriculia. Irregardless of race, being poor is the great divide in our education system. If anything this article points to, at the very core, the structure for educational funding must be restructured to ensure equitable access to strong educational opportunities.

Alexandrea Merrell said...

This case is a travesty, but so is your claim that this is a case of “American Racism 101.”
Williams-Bolar didn’t catch a felony because she is black or because she was trying to get a better education for her children and lied about her address on a form. She was brought to trial because she altered legal, court documents. This is the difference between me saying that I have a million dollars when I don’t and actually trying to print out a million dollars on my printer.

Williams-Bolar had options if she wanted to improve her children’s education options. Hundreds of thousands of parents home school to avoid crappy schools. Of they move. She chose not to pursue legal means to achieve her goals. I don’t have issue with punishing law breakers and Williams-Bolar is a law breaker. But, I have serious issue with the punishment that Williams-Bolar received.

The real travesty is that Judge Cosgrove handed down what amounts to a life sentence for Williams-Bolar and her family. The DA, in charging Williams-Bolar with a felony as opposed to a high-misdemeanor robbed this woman of the ability to complete her education and become a teacher. The felony conviction bars her from most professional occupations. This sentence dooms her and her family to poverty. In my opinion this amounts to cruel and unusual punishment. It is my sincere hope that some lawyer will find out about this case thanks to your blog and see what can be done to overturn this in post conviction relief. But screaming racism does her no favors.

To suggest that you can simply deduct the cost of education in one area from another and call it even forgets that property taxes pay for those improved school districts. Recently, the San Francisco Unified School District expelled 80 students who were attending schools in the district fraudulently. In areas with popular schools, even student that live in the district (and whose parents pay the increased property taxes) can’t get a spot in the school. So when parents choose to lie on the forms and falsify addresses, they reap the benefit at the expense of those local families who have paid for the privilege with higher property taxes and higher rents or mortgages.

Then it becomes a matter of priorities. I live in NYC and personally know several families who have prioritized education and chose to live in small, crapped apartments in a top rated school district. They could easily live in much larger apartments in other areas of the city (or houses in the suburbs), but in the best city school districts, they can only afford small apartments. Should they lose out because some who don’t pay the higher property taxes or higher rents and mortgages lie and take the place rightly belonging to their children?

Billions of tax payer dollars are being lost each year to education related fraud. Those are BILLIONS of dollars that could be used to improve the conditions of the very schools that parents like Williams-Bolar are trying to escape. Since people can’t be trusted to be honest, school districts are going to have to become much more vigilant in verifying incomes and addresses. This will unfortunately mean that many more, well meaning parents will find themselves in legal hot water.

teshondj said...

And if the father was paying his taxes to live in that district, why is it a crime to utilize his money for his OWN children?

Paula said...

I think this is appalling, but I don't think it's based solely on color, and to equate so much to the color is a disservice to the injustices done here. Across the board, poor people get the raw deal.

It's horrible that someone (of any color), living in our country in 2011 should not be able to secure an equal education for their children due to the neighborhood they live in. She was wrong to lie about her residency, but I do understand the motivation. The judge was wrong to hand down a punishment with monetary fines, and, again, the sting of injustice is all over the felony charge which takes away this woman's dream of a better life. That to me is the worst part of it all.

Why is this sort of case being prosecuted when there are actual criminals out there harming other people?

Awful. Thank you for raising the awareness.

sambson said...

Utterly idiotic. Where's Johnny Cochran?

qnbee1116 said...

Its a shame when your children have to leave their neighborhood to attend a better school. Why aren't all schools created equal? It's a shame when a tax payer can't have her children get the same education in her own neighborhood where she pays taxes. Part of her taxes are used for schools in her neighborhood and the school is not up to par.
It's further a shame that this mother is being jailed, fined, placed on probation and won't be able to get a job that she going to school for.We must also keep in mind she has to pay back her student loans. She should sue the state,city and county for providing inadequate education. if she doesn't send her children to school then she would then be arrested for neglect. She should also sue the state, city and county for violation of her equal rights.Its discrimination that a african american school is not equal to the "white" school. She is working and going to school to continue to be a productive member of society. FOR WHAT?

Gayle said...

As a Christian we are called to seek justice, let us pray for this situation and flood this judge's office with faxes: 330-643-8731, http://www.summitcpcourt.net/Judges/Patricia_Cosgrove/Pages/CourtContactInfo.aspx
Here is where I got the information. Let us move peacefully to change the world, one voice, one fax at a time.

Meitzi said...

This is ridiculous. I know parents using false address for their children to attend better schools ALL OVER CALIFORNIA; especially in Palo Alto and Cupertino.

It is idiotic the judge would punish a mother for sending her children to school. This is beyond unfair. The mother would not get this 10-day jail time had she not send her children to school at all.

And to take away the possibility of becoming a teacher is just wrong.

Lionel Braithwaite said...

Here's an even better idea, instead of just mindlessly petitioning politicians: why not vote in the Green Party or the Socialist Party in the next round of elections (municipal/state/federal) and getting some real change happening in America? Then we can see some change on the education front, and what happened to this lady doesn't have to happen to anybody else again.

Here are the addresses for both parties:

The Green Party (www.gp.org)

The Socialist Party (http://socialistparty-usa.org)

Alexandrea Merrell said...

@Lionel Braithwaite

Yeah socialism is the way to go...just look how well its worked everywhere else on the planet. Sheesh

Theresa Ann said...

Can we start a letter/email writing campaign?

Vidhya said...

Just to clarify, since a lot of people commenting seem confused about this, she seems to have used HER father's address (NOT the kids' father), so issues of joint parental custody are not relevant. Of course the overall analysis is spot on. Here's a link to where we can provide support by signing a petition: http://www.change.org/petitions/view/calling_for_reduction_on_appeal_of_ms_kelly_williams-bolars_unfair_sentencing_for_fraud_and_theft. I believe there's also an address to send donations somewhere on the change.org site.

Joby said...

something seriously needs to be done about this. this woman is guilty of nothing but sacrificing for the greater good of her kids. lets send a strong message that is this is not changed then we will MAKE SURE those officials never have a spot in ohio politics again...

Cynthia Austin, ACME Legal Investigations, Inc. said...

What about Equal Educational Opportunities? I think they mention, race, color, sex or national origin, but I think they left out Economy...
I believe it is okay for schools to assign children to a school closest in the childs area.. however if the parent does not want their child to be taught in that school, the parent should have their legal rights to send their child to the school they wish. The school district has taken things too far! The judge needs to step down from her position! Who gave the school district this much power? Since when should they have more rights to our children than we as parents? To send a mother who loves her children to jail because she acted on her freedom in the United States to have her children to learn in the school of her choice, it is an outrage! Why do we allow our government to divide taxes to the schools the way they do? Richer neighborhoods get more money? How are we going to get our children in poor families educated so they do not always remain poor? A single parent gets singled out to not be able to give her children the education she chooses for them to have? Who is raising our children? I think that we need to take away the control that some of these governments have and give the control back to the people. Taxes should be divided evenly to all schools and all schools should be equal in their education.

I think the judge and the people who have condemned this Mother should spend time in jail before they send this mother to jail. This is crazy! This is not a good example, this is seriously just an example of how much control we have given our school districts and judges. Amend the Equal Educational Opportunity Act (20 USC Sec. 1703) Make a change... (a)No State Should deny equal educational opportunity to an individual on account of his or her race, color, sex, national origin, neighborhood of living whether it be a Wealthy or Poor neighborhood. (b)they need to take out other than the one closest to hs or her place of residence within the school district. (Take that out, it takes away our freedom and rights!)


TITLE 20 - EDUCATION
CHAPTER 39 - EQUAL EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES
SUBCHAPTER I - EQUAL EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES
Part 2 - Unlawful Practices

§ 1703. Denial of equal educational opportunity prohibited

No State shall deny equal educational opportunity to an individual on account of his or her race, color, sex, or national origin, by -

* (a) the deliberate segregation by an educational agency of students on the basis of race, color, or national origin among or within schools;

* (b) the failure of an educational agency which has formerly practiced such deliberate segregation to take affirmative steps, consistent with part 4 of this subchapter, to remove the vestiges of a dual school system;

* (c) the assignment by an educational agency of a student to a school, other than the one closest to his or her place of residence within the school district in which he or she resides, if the assignment results in a greater degree of segregation of students on the basis of race, color, sex, or national origin among the schools of such agency than would result if such student were assigned to the school closest to his or her place of residence within the school district of such agency providing the appropriate grade level and type of education for such student;

* (d) discrimination by an educational agency on the basis of race, color, or national origin in the employment, employment conditions, or assignment to schools of its faculty or staff, except to fulfill the purposes of subsection (f) below;

* (e) the transfer by an educational agency, whether voluntary or otherwise, of a student from one school to another if the purpose and effect of such transfer is to increase segregation of students on the basis of race, color, or national origin among the schools of such agency;

I Ching Insight said...

This is a shocking disgrace. I would support any reasonable activity that would establish true justice for this mother. I have no doubt that race and class discrimination is at play here. Statistics indicate that fraud is a common crime for American women but that African American women are much more likely to receive jail sentences than members of other ethnicities and cultures. This sentence is far too harsh and should be appealed.

alexis said...

This is such a sad case. It's as if this judge is deliberately trying to keep the separations and inequalities that plague this country in place.

It seems like the establishment box feels so very threatened right now, it will do ANYTHING to oppress those outside of it, to keep them out.

N. Auch said...

How can we help support this woman who simply wants the best for her child in America? We allow illegal immigrants to send their children to our schools and yet we don't allow a lower economical black woman give her children an education that will help them? I'm shocked and disappointed.

Can we help create a campaign and a fund to help this woman? I have no children but I pay taxes and I'd rather my taxes support a woman who wants good education for her children than most of the spoiled middle class children and their parents who don't want to work hard to learn.

Keep us posted on how to help this woman and her children!!

klparry said...

This is bull pucky. I don't see where she broke any laws. The father resided in the district. I am sure he had visitation rights to his children which, one would think, would give him the right to send his children to that school. If not then it should have.
What a joke. Perfect example of our broken judicial system.

TeresaB said...

We have to fight back. This kind of injustice should never happen.
I don't know if this was already said, but if the father lives in the better district, isn't he paying taxes? Aren't those girls his kids too?
This does happen to poor whites as well especially single moms.
My(white) girlfriend went to jail and has a felony because of a thousand dollar animal hospital bill, even though she paid it off through the court.She did not have a lawyer.

Nicola said...

This is outrageous! Not only is this racist, this is class-ist. They were trying to "keep her in her place" by punishing her for trying to give her kids a better education. I'm disgusted. It's 2011, this should not happen any more.

Jim said...

This judge is clearly from the church of born again stupid. I have on several occasions allowed friends to use my address to rezone themselves for the same purpose. All she wanted was a better education for her children and now she won't be able to get her credential either. What a sad judge indeed.

casantrygriffin said...

I see nothing wrong with her wanting to her children to attend a better school than the one by the projects. I think some1 from the NAACP should step in on the case and get her rights back. She deserves to continue her education of becoming a teacher and to make a better future for her children. I do agree on a comment tht was said earlier about some1 in the same situation. I hope she appeals the case.

casantrygriffin said...

I posted a comment on the page about wht happened. I think the outcome is not fair. They only did it because she is black. If it were som1 white they wouldnt have sentence them to 7days and took there right away of becoming a teacher.

Valerie said...

If there is a legal defense fund for Ms. Williams-Bolar, please post information about it. It is appalling that this could take place. My heart goes out to this woman for working so incredibly hard for her children and to be so horribly treated. The fact that the judge felt that she could make such a ruling and get away with it is a chilling statement about the current situation of our injustice system today. I hope and pray that there can be a way for this ruling to be fought and overturned and hope there is some way that I can contribute and encourage others to contribute to that effort.

Samantha said...

The first part of your article was demeaned by the second part. Bobby Kennedy stated, "It's class, not colour. What everyone wants is a job and some hope". This was not about race but you used the plight of that woman and her children to push your racial agenda. It would have been the same if the woman was a poor white living in a project. Instead of trying to make it a race issue, make it an issue for the way that poor blacks and poor whites are treated in this country.

Rochesternative said...

Hey everyone, if you haven't seen the movie "Waiting for Superman" YOU NEED TO. It shows historically why our educational system has gotten as bad as it has and SPECIFICALLY deals with issues in urban education. I teach in an urban district, what I am told to do upsets me so much I am on the verge of being fired (for rebelling) It would be great if people would help this lady, but PARENTS need to stand up and DEMAND that states pass right-to-work laws for teachers...right now the unions control EVERYTHING, and good teachers and administrators are STUCK in the system

Jennifer Vaughan said...

This woman was jailed just for wanting a better education for her children. She shouldn't have lied, but she only wanted a better education for her children from the crime-infested neighborhood where she lived! Its wrong that the punishment was so extreme! It's completely wrong! The court and law enforcement should spend their time going after REAL criminals like murders and rapists and let this woman do community service and let it be....

I honestly believe that if she were White, the punishment would NOT have been so severe, but because she is poor and Black, she is being used as an example!

gGerry said...

The real FRAUD happening here & in too many places across the U.S. is that schools & their administrators are knowingly, by deception, obtaining some benefits: The schools knowingly deceive when they make public reports to higher authorities claiming to have successfully educated our youth; and when the schools issue diplomas to students who can't compose a cogent paragraph or add 1/3 + 1/2, etc., then they are knowingly deceiving the students, their parents, the voters, local/state/federal boards/departments of education, colleges, and employers. The schools doing so benefit in continuing to receive local/state/federal funds, and -when voters pass a school bond levy- receiving taxpayer support; the school administrators benefit by keeping their positions and perhaps even getting [we shouldn't say "earning"] promotions.

Perhaps we should have some class action suit seeking redress for such fraud?!

The future of the U.S. is in such great danger due to the gross dysfunction of our educational system. Whichever sub-populations of American society are the first to successfully overhaul the modes of education in their communities, it will be those sub-populations that will become the leaders & innovators & affluent citizens of tomorrow's America.

[Kudos, Dr. Boyce, for the public service that you accomplish.]

gGerry said...

The real FRAUD happening here & in too many places across the U.S. is that schools & their administrators are knowingly, by deception, obtaining some benefits: The schools knowingly deceive when they make public reports to higher authorities claiming to have successfully educated our youth; and when the schools issue diplomas to students who can't compose a cogent paragraph or add 1/3 + 1/2, etc., then they are knowingly deceiving the students, their parents, the voters, local/state/federal boards/departments of education, colleges, and employers. The schools doing so benefit in continuing to receive local/state/federal funds, and -when voters pass a school bond levy- receiving taxpayer support; the school administrators benefit by keeping their positions and perhaps even getting [we shouldn't say "earning"] promotions.

Perhaps we should have some class action suit seeking redress for such fraud?!

The future of the U.S. is in such great danger due to the gross dysfunction of our educational system. Whichever sub-populations of American society are the first to successfully overhaul the modes of education in their communities, it will be those sub-populations that will become the leaders & innovators & affluent citizens of tomorrow's America.

[Kudos, Dr. Boyce, for the public service that you accomplish.]

Edward said...

I am a 16 year old young man I and I live in PA and I feel as though this family was wronged in many ways. First, if the jury members have a family and they put them selves in her situation I wonder if they would have made the same decision. I understand the law is in place for a reason but I mean how many people in this country have committed a "Felony" I mean if you look at many laws I mean many people commit them every day and never know what the law is.
Such as ling to someone about your age is a federal crime a person can get up to 20 years in prison for ling about there age. I mean where do we say no this should not be a law. I mean there are people who rape girls who get less of a sentence than she almost did. I believe that we the people all around the world should do what every we can to help this lady follow her dreams and get her and her children the education they deserve.
I have to say I will do the best I can from my end to make my voice heard. What will you do?

Mac said...

I am white and live in a predominately black neighborhood. My kids went to the local schools. I know for a fact that the schools they went to had fewer supplies, less books, older material, older facilities, less room and teachers with much less experience than in the predominately white schools.

I did volunteer work for the school district as an Environmental Scientist. I saw most of the schools. I also know that the district requested I spend a greater amount of time in the affluent schools as opposed to schools in poorer areas.

It is abundantly clear there is a two tier educational system in this country. Poor schools are robbed for the sake of rich schools. It was a true shame to see the truly poor quality of education kids in my area got because of the color of their skin and the social condition of their families.

walter-reuther said...

I see a lot of outrage, but none of it directed at the cause of the problem.

Fact: The woman broke the law. Should she be given a pass due to her race, gender, sexual orientation, economic status, etc? If so, where do we stop that policy? Fraud, theft, battery, murder?

The system works the way it does because liberals and Democrats support the unions that keep funding inside the school districts and perpetuates the extremely unequal distribution of educational resources. Meanwhile, the conservatives, tea baggers, and Republicans try hard to keep state and federal control out of "local" matters like school funding, curriculum, etc. That leaves us with just a few parents in the middle with very little voice to get public school reform moving.

So next time you're on the picket lines or mindlessly support unionism, next time you're carrying a sign at your local Tea Party rally, next time you cast that vote at the ballot box, think long and hard about what that means outside of your narrow preconceived notions. That's the time to get outraged and *act*. challenge your local, state, and national office leaders at every step of the way, even if it means >-gasp!-< straying outside party lines.

Breath of My Ancestors said...

This is indeed appalling and it boggles the mind that white Americans in the 21st century could be so insensitive and down-right inhumane. It appears that it is asking too much of white America to change from its slave-master mentality.

The judge in this case is no different from a 19th century slave-owner who caught one of her slaves reading and whipped them with a cat-o-nine-tails then locked the slave in a shed for ten days saying, "that'll learn you." All this in an allegedly "post-racial" society. SMH
White America, where is your compassion for humanity, where is your heart, where is your civility?

Chris Nandor said...

There is no logical reason on earth why this mother of two should be dehumanized by going to jail and be left permanently marginalized from future economic and educational opportunities. Even if you believe in the laws that keep poor kids trapped in underperforming schools, the idea that this woman should be sent to jail for demanding educational access is simply ridiculous.

Correct. However, she was not sent to jail for demanding educational access, and you know better: she was sent to jail for committing the crime of falsifying records. Her sentence was mostly suspended because of the circumstances you mention.

I think the punishment was too harsh, but you can't let people get away with falsifying public records. What punishment would you suggest that would be severe enough to discourage others from doing the same?

Chris Nandor said...

Also, the crime and punishment aside, I'd point out that the real crime here is that our governments force people into the situation where they feel they either have to put their kids in a dangerous situation -- which is unacceptable -- or risk criminal prosecution by cheating to get them into a better school.

This problem IS eminently solvable through the myriad possibilities for school choice: distance learning, vouchers, homeschooling, and more ... not to mention actually putting education of children as the most important function of the state, ensuring that no school will be in such a state that any parent would be put into such a situation.

It sounds like there should be an investigation of the school she took such great pains to avoid, and that if it is as bad as she thinks, or anything close to it, heads should roll and the school should be shut down, or turned over to someone else who has 30 days to fix it.

brendabeyt said...

This is definitely an outrage while the people that write anonymous and want to stay on the outer edge of their reality fail to realize that this is another racist act there is no two ways about it. Now if your White and can't recognize the blatant attack that has been handed down than stay out of it and keep your asinine commentaries to yourself. No one cares what you think because you don't matter in the equations for one you aren't going to be totally honest about this act! As for the following people that choose to stand up and protest ,boycott whatever is necessary should be acted upon. Write your local Congressman-woman, call in campaign, whatever is workable please let's do it. I am in a bubble that emphasizes that I am sick and tired of being sick and tred of racist attacks and even more racist individuals that hide behind the internet and any other obstacles that allow them not to be seen and or counted as the cowards that they clearly are. They (Racists) know that nowadays you can't say that you hate Blacks,Asians.Mexicans,Jews,Indians,Lesbians,Homosexuals,Muslims,Catholics anyone that is different from them and get away with it! That is fine for those that want to fight this war with the courts but remember that the courts also can backfire on you as it has done in this case. This woman true may have known the truth and stretched it too far but anyone with any sense such as the Judge in this case and the prosecuting Attorney knew that they would break her back and the backs of her family and that they really don't care that is the inhumane catastrophe taking place here. Government doesn't care whether they are helping an individual when they are people of color but let that have been some one of the same orientation that they were and that would have been a different tale all together different. It's just too much to rant and rave back and forwards when the truth still remains the same they are racist and they know that they are but being cowards will let the courts talk and the internet hide then away from their true nature's which are snakes and even more sicker than they equate the Moor race in the worst way they can cast us Please don't forget their underhandedness and their COWARDICE TOO!

S said...

This story is insane. I'm truly enraged at the court system. And not only did they put this working class mother of two in jail they also had the nerve to take away the power of her education. She is an educated women with a degree and now she will not be able to use it. What do you think will happen to this family. They are going to go on welfare and not contribute to society. UGH.

Chris Nandor said...

Again, y'all: what is your solution? You can be enraged that she was convicted, but would you rather let her get away with falsifying records, sending a signal to society that such fraud against the government is acceptable?

Vendweb said...

I just wanted to say how wrong the whole story of the mother that you sentenced to jail for trying to give her kids a better education was.

We all deserve the same education by the public and if one education system is deemed better then another then that is where the courts should be working at fixing.

Is it not true that the lady paid taxes to the school that she was supposedly to use?

So her money went to that school, did it not?

So is this not a wash?

Why on earth would one try and make an example of this person for doing what all of us should do and that is use the best schools possible for our kids.

Is it not called public schools?

Why should we be held to certain schools and why are not all schools the same?

So again I believe you should have gone after the school system and not a parent just trying to do best for their kids…

Thanks

Lindel Creed

Rochesternative said...

This is yet another example of how corrupt our educational system has become. Granted, she broke the law. (Why did she not move in with her father?) but a FELONY (for grand theft I assume) is over the top. Black, white or purple, one should be able to choose the school that meets your child's needs...and let's face it, most inner city schools are failure factories.

Rochesternative said...

Chris
Not enraged, saddened. Fraud against the government is serious...and should be. But short of moving in with her father what were her other options for getting her children into decent schools? Are their charter schools? Private schools with tuition assistance?

Chris Nandor said...

Rochesternative: right, in my second comment, I said: "the real crime here is that our governments force people into the situation where they feel they either have to put their kids in a dangerous situation -- which is unacceptable -- or risk criminal prosecution by cheating to get them into a better school."

But while that's the real crime ... she committed a crime too, and she should be held accountable for it, in such a way that others won't follow in her footsteps.

As tragic as this story is, it will be more tragic if all of the anger here is not used to fix the root problem, which isn't racism or one family's trouble with the law, but a government that forces kids into bad schools.

We need more school choices, and we need to shut down or fix government schools immediately, not over the course of several years.

Vendweb said...

Chris I agree that we need to get the school system fixed.
Why is that only land owners pay for the school system?
Why is that if you choose not to participate in the public school system you still have to pay?
No, I do not think she broke a law because the so called law she broke should never be in place to begin with. The problem with our system is there are stupid laws on books that we the people do not even have a say in.. So when a person of this country does something to make a better life for their kids, because the system has failed anyways, then she broke no laws at all

Chris Nandor said...

"No, I do not think she broke a law because the so called law she broke should never be in place to begin with."

So you're saying we should be allowed to fraudulently falsify official legal documents? That's the law she broke. It's not a stupid law, it's a good law, and let's not pretend she didn't willfully break it.

You cannot have justice without the rule of law. That's not to say the law is always right, but when we willfully violate the law, we must be held accountable to it: anything less is sacrificing the rule of law for the rule of man, and this directly results in unfairness based on who you are and which judge you have. In such a system we no longer have rights, but are subject merely to the whims of whichever judge we get.

She broke the law, and should be penalized for it. Justice demands it, because the rule of law demands it.

Alison said...

What can I do, what can I get my family and friends to do. Write the prosecutor, the judge, protest, write their state congress, bring it to national attention? This is a disgusting reassurance of how America will continue to run, regardless of the race or culture of our president or other major elected officials. Our communities need to take action to combat this and not expect such leaps and bounds from a "radical" change in the presidential cabinet. The anhedonia of Americans, black, brown, white, mixed, yellow, needs to stop and find a way to use their power locally.

Vendweb said...

Sorry Chris but that is where the real problem is and why these stupid laws such as this are as they are because people like you go along with it.
I hear what you are saying that we must obey the law but when the so called laws are unfair and believe me this one is so unfair it sticks, and hurt us as people by not giving us each the same education well then we must stand up and break the laws to make them be changed.
It is when we force change that we the people say is the way it should be is when you will see real change. Her child deserves the same quality education as the child that goes to that better school and as a parent we must do what we must do to make sure our kids and ourselves are treated fairly...

Vendweb said...

Alison
You have to contact your voted representatives and let them know to change the rules and make the system that is fair for us all,
I know the process is a pain and most of the time they will not listen anyway..

Chris Nandor said...

Vendweb: "that is where the real problem is and why these stupid laws such as this are as they are because people like you go along with it."

Please, PLEASE, explain to me what is "stupid" or "unfair" about a law that says you can't lie on legal government documents.

That is the only law I am "going along with" here; that is the law in question. I wasn't talking about schools or residency or funding, I was talking about the specific crime she was sentenced for: falsifying government documents.

I have repeatedly said I am ALL FOR trying to fix the problem with the schools. But you are demanding lawlessness, and that necessarily results in injustice.


"Her child deserves the same quality education as the child that goes to that better school and as a parent we must do what we must do to make sure our kids and ourselves are treated fairly..."

Yep. And if what you do to make sure your kids are treated fairly is to lie on legal government documents, and you get caught, you will rightly and justly be held accountable for that crime.

If you want her to get away with her crime just because you think she did it for a good reason, then you have no right to complain when someone else gets away with a crime for some reason you don't agree with. That's the rule of man; for justice, we must favor the rule of law.

In fact, while you are claiming this law is "unfair," it would actually be "unfair" if she got away with her crime of lying on legal government documents just because we think she did it for a good reason. Justice must be blind, or it does not exist at all.

Vendweb said...

Chris
You gotta do what you gotta do for the best of your kids and if the only way to do that was to lie on a document that should not have to lie on to begin with then she did what she had to do.
The so called legal document that she lied on was forced upon her and there should never be any such document that keeps one child from receiving the same education as anyone else. If there is such documents then those documents need to be destroyed as again the system is unfair and we must do what we must to make sure we ad WE THE PEOPLE get treated fairly and not let ourselves be grouped into categories that determine what we get or do not get, we all get the same or no one gets any, we all pay the same or no one pays at all..... So yes if she had to lie to get her kid a better education then I am behind her 100% as she should had never been put into that position to begin with

Chris Nandor said...

Vendweb: "You gotta do what you gotta do for the best of your kids"

Yes. And the law has to do what it has to do for the rule of law.


"The so called legal document that she lied on"

Not "so called." It was, in fact, in every possible way, a legal document.


"was forced upon her and there should never be any such document that keeps one child from receiving the same education as anyone else"

No one can receive the same education as anyone else (and you wouldn't want everyone to have the same education! education is about what is best for each learner, not what every other learner is getting). But yes, no one should be forced to accept any particular education they don't want for their kids. Absolutely true.


"we all get the same or no one gets any, we all pay the same or no one pays at all"

If that were true, then all poor people would have to pay a lot more in taxes. And again, you can't get the same. It's not about comparisons of "you're better so we want better, or you get worse." That leads to nothing good.

I could not care less how my school, city, state, or nation ranks against other schools, cities, states, or nations. I only care if my school, city, state, or nation is GOOD, for whatever we the people decide is GOOD. If another city has a different education, I don't care! More power to them: every school district must be allowed the freedom to do things differently.

We don't want everything to be the same, we just want all learners to have equal opportunity for learning.


"So yes if she had to lie to get her kid a better education then I am behind her 100% as she should had never been put into that position to begin with"

Yes, I said from the outset she should never have been put in that situation. But she must be held accountable for her crime, or we are defending injustice and lawlessness.

Rochesternative said...

Venderweb
As unjust as it is to have different educational standards the reason it is against the law to jump to a different school district because the people in that district pay taxes to support the schools and the taxes are directed tied to the property taxes paid. Now, while I think it is outrageous that we (the taxpayer) are forced to support government schools (for, that is what they are) that will not change until parents stand up to the unions and demand that they be banned (or go to the state legislature and demand right-to-work laws for teachers) This whole situation is tied to the Democraticly control Department of Education. Thank Jimmy Carter for this situation.

Rochesternative said...

Chris: I'm not saying she shouldn't be punished, she should have consequences, I don't know if a sentencing her with a felony is right, but she should have to repay the money. I saw a post on another site that stated the annual cost in her district was over 11,000, and in the district her children attended school in was about 8,600. Poor districts have too much at the top and not enough where the rubber hits the road. Read the column by David Spady today on Townhall called America needs a School Choice Perestroika

Rochesternative said...

Venderweb-
All schools are not the same. This is based partially on funding. IF she was a land owner, then her taxes went to her home school district. THEY didn't care if her kids didn't show up. The issue was with the OTHER district. Other taxpayers were paying to educate her children. Many districts will allow a person to pay tuiton and send their child to said district. Schools are not the same due to social dynamics, background of the families (socio-economic status) AND the philosphies of the district. Where I teach, I'm not allowed to introduce anything to my (pre-k) kids that they don't bring up. STUPID. These are urban children with little background in all things academic, how do THEY know what they need to learn? Thus, I am providing a substandard "education" compared to surrounding districts. I'm not sure why this story hit the national media, I know of two instances in my area in the last year where the same thing happened...and I also have had parents tell me they had plans to send their kids to suburban kindergartens by using a relatives address. Government schools are run by the unions. The teachers unions basically run the Democratic party. Teachers unions run the National Department of Education. We've (as a nation) gotten into this mess by allowing teachers unions to get so powerful that they can keep teachers from teaching unless they are members of the union. Government schools need to be scrapped. Unions need to be shut down. Go see "Waiting for Superman"

Maggie said...

As a person who works in the education system, this story makes me sick. Parents *should* be able to choose which schools their children go to, and if that causes overcrowding, then a school should make changes to their education methods.

I also feel whoever turned her in must be truly evil.

Texas Mom said...

The punishment that Ms. Williams-Bolar received was wrong. She was charged with falsifying documents regarding her residency. My daughter was an out-of-state student attending North Carolina State University on scholarship. The University changed her residency status from out-of-state to in-state. This happened after the university determined that she could no longer participate on their athletic team because she could not speak clearly. I suppose if my daughter had been a male 6’7” she could have stayed on their team regardless if she could not speak clear enough for the university.

She had never applied for an in-state address, but the university listed her on their official documents as an in-state student. My question is why Ms. Williams-Bolar received such harsh punishment, when the university did the same thing and nothing happen to the person or persons that changed my daughter’s status?

Chase said...

I found a link about a local police officer of 20 years being arrested for using LEADS police database during his private investigations on Copley residency issues. He was doing the investigations not as part of the police force but as a private investigator. He was fired and charged with a felony. Was any of his info the info used to follow and research Kelley Bolar? If so is it allowed in court?

Chase said...

http://www.ohio.com/news/local/112299369.html This is the page that makes me wonder if her investigation was even legal.

albert said...

Perfect example of why we need School Choice, not more money being poured into the current system.

http://schoolchoiceweek.com/

royaldavis75 said...

I read some of the comments that were posted and I dont believe this is about race but about the system and how it needs to adapt to today's issues because the laws are so old and outdated and don't apply to life as we know it, and in some cases have to be broken. But we as a american people must vote wether your white,black,latino,muslim,etc. because these people of the system are set in there ways("old")and we need some new generation blood in that arena who have expierence with todays society, are we will continue to have these type of mistakes by the system @ the comments of a different way to handle her situation,that is the generation im talking about. because her life is ruined because she was trying to do the right thing for her children who will be helping my generation when they get older. And at custodial parents the sytem dont care about your children they just want money to tell you what to do with your kids and don't even know you are your kids so there orders are not always in the best interest of the child, case and point this lady. Now I assume the father see's the kids why not let him be the custodial parent and avoid this type of system problem that has accured but she must have wanted the money to. Parents stop letting your feelings for the other parent cause damage to you and your kids, and stop letting the system get involved cause as you see somebody looses in the end.

pitbulladvocates said...

First, to legislators and Ohio officials, STOP WASTING OUR TAX MONEY! 2nd, hardened criminals rarely serve full sentences for rape, molestation, child pornography, etc yet you sentence a MOTHER just trying to better her childrens education, something this government would NEVER understand, goes to JAIL for TEN FRIGGEN DAYS for simply crossing a border to school districts. I thought your dog laws were bad and ignorant, now I see it's your "leaders" as a whole. You are seriously out of your friggen minds and I for one am appalled and feel horribly sorry for what this woman has had to endure due to your serious control issues. Get real, get educated and STOP messing w/ GOOD FAMILIES TRYING TO MAKE IT IN THE WORLD YOU RUIN AND CORRUPT!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ohio legislators, you are truly pathetic.

Chris Nandor said...

pitbulladvocates, you write she went "to JAIL for TEN FRIGGEN DAYS for simply crossing a border to school districts."

It's not true. It didn't happen. It was not for crossing a border, it was for falsifying documents.

darius said...

For everyone who thinks this is wrong please sign the petition here http://www.change.org/petitions/gov-john-kasich-pardon-kelley-williams-bolar----she-shouldnt-go-to-jail-for-protecting-her-kid its something we can do to help this lady.

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Michael said...

This is totally outrageous. How come a court deliver such a harsh punishment for something like this. Its understandable that making an example out of an issue is sometime important but this is something totally wrong. In my career as a tutor for math I have seen such example creation and it makes me sad.

Tutor For Math said...

This is totally outrageous. How come a court deliver such a harsh punishment for something like this. Its understandable that making an example out of an issue is sometime important but this is something totally wrong. In my career as a tutor for math I have seen such example creation and it makes me sad.

Online Math Tutor said...

This is so sad, such treatment should have never been handed out for these offences. It spoils life

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