Was a Haskell Indian Nations University employee ordered to leave campus?

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Was a Haskell Indian Nations University employee ordered to leave campus?

Statistically domestic violence calls are one of the most dangerous calls police can receive. Therefore we must ask the following questions: Was a new Haskell Indian Nations University residential employee given orders by his boss Thomas Spottedhorse to escort an off campus student to her apartment because she feared her boyfriend might cause her harm while she tried to collect some of her belongings? Can a Haskell Indian Nations University employee who is a federal employee leave their station? In this case the largest dorm on Haskell’s campus to accompany one student to her resident ? Did the employee take her in his own vehicle? Or a federal vehicle? Is either of these two things legal? What if a questionable situation would have happened between the female student and the male employee? What would have happened if violence would have unfolded?
Whose responsibility would that have been? Was the Lawrence Police Department called to help in this situation? How can parents and tribes feel safe about sending their kids to Haskell when residential staff are being pulled from their post and sent off campus? We are thinking maybe some of them don’t with Haskell’s current enrollment sitting very low at around 830 students? Has the Haskell’s president’s office been informed of what happened? Last year the notice below was put out by Thomas Spottedhorse was it followed in this situation? “Memo” written by Tom Spotted Horse Supervisory College Residence Asst. Dated October 3, 2010. A REMINDER: When ever the Lawrence Police Dept. is called to the campus you need to inform the President’s Office of the situation. Sometimes a student may call the police themselves. If you do not know the reason(s) why the police is on the campus, please inquire as to the circumstances. If the Presidents Office is closed, send an email right away before you shift is over and give an assessment of the event. Remember to “cc” the email sent to the VP of Student Affairs, Mr. Tucker and myself. If it is a critical incident, a Critical Incident Form needs to be completed and signed. This is also for medical emergencies and for responses by the Fire Dept. Anytime a student is transported to the emergency room a Medical Emergency Form needs to be filled out and completed for review. I CANNOT STRESS how important this is. If your office does not have the forms, get one from another building. However, every office should have these forms. Thank you, Tom Spotted Horse, Supervisory College Residence Asst. Link: http://www.cbs8.com/story/15312200/domestic-violence-calls-especially-dangerous-for-cops haskellnews commentary 10/13/2011

Senator Rand Paul rallies to shut down The Bureau of Indian Education and The Bureau of Indian Affairs.

Senator Rand Paul

Senator Rand Paul rallies to shut down The Bureau of Indian Education and The Bureau of Indian Affairs.

The new kid on the block, Senator Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, The toast of the Tea Party, has decided the United States government would be better off not supporting The Bureau of Indian Education,The Bureau of Indian Affairs and Indian Health Services.

Quite frankly we wish we could oppose him, but seeing the mess that Haskell Indian Nations University is in with it almost non-existence graduation rates and crimes on campus gives us a moment to pause.

“Self-determination and self-governance” does not mean letting the United States Government run your life for you. What has The Buerau of Indian Education done for you at Haskell? Gave you people such as Stephanie Birdwell-Bighorn, Larry Echohawk, Venida Chenault to name a few, who have been no help to you at all while letting others who could have really helped you leave like Dr. Warner, Deb Thompson, Sharon Hallum, Dr. Blackbird, Ted Wright and Ted Junea, just to name a few. They let some of your programs go and even with his shaddy back ground they have continued to let George Tiger head up the board of regents and be around the students.

And poor Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute, they just flat out let them lose their accreditation.

The tribes have clearly shown they do a much better job without the governments interference.

The problem goes far beyond just Haskell though. The BIA/BIE and IHS have been run poorly for decades. American Indians are entitled to cut rate care at any IHS facility, just like the cut rate education they are currently receiving at Haskell.

And what The Cobell settlement? American Indians will receive ( if they ever receive it at all ) pennies on the dollars that the government stole from them.

American Indians ( those of you who are not among the elitist few receiving the big bucks from Uncle Sam, like Larry Echohawk) need to raise up join Rand Paul, demand your money, and demand that your tribes take over, everything from Haskell, to IHS. Get rid of The Bureau of Indian Affairs and The Bureau of Indian Education. That would be true “Self-determination and self-governance” Obama failed you.

haskellnews commentary 02/10/2011

The other good news today is did our social worker (Stephanie Birdwell-Bighorn) finally found a hole to crawl into?

Haskell Indian Nations University, in Lawrence, Kansas, prepares for convocation next week and welcomes internationally and nationally recognized Lakota elder Lionnel Bordeaux as the keynote speaker. Dr. Bordeaux’s vision for tribal higher education is one of a premier national university.

It will be interesting to watch the faces of the current administration/union/regent posse determined to live in the 1950s? Like his stage mate, George Tiger? Locally and regionally recognized George Tiger, known for his many questionable enterprises through the Creek Nation, including one tribal indictment for criminal charges(www2.ljworld.com/weblogs/ummmm/2009/aug/28/enough-already-with-the-haskell-bor-george-tiger)and (www.thevoicesofcourage.com) won’t understand anything Dr. Bordeaux says, will he? Will union representatives dismiss it outright? Will current administrators, Venida Chenault (VCEM in particular) hug George Tiger and subsequently misrepresent anything Dr. Bordeaux says?

Dr. Bordeaux is an active member of American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC), The National Indian Education Association (NIEA), and National Congress of American Indians (NCAI)—all of which have resolutions to remove Haskell Indian Nations University, from The Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) and turn it over to tribes (which is likely the only way it could resurrect itself from the Echohawk-Skenandore-Moore-Birdwell fiasco these past months).

Hopefully American Indian studies ( A.I.S) will require their students to attend because Dr. Bordeaux actually knows what self-determination means having lived it instead of waiting until he was an adult to decide he was Indian (pretty much the common dominator for Haskell’s Indian studies PROFESSORS)? At least if US Senators would ever listen to tribes, there would be the chance to create the premier Indian University by removing all of the current mistakes and turning the control of Haskell and all of its affairs to a group who actually knows about higher education and cares about students.

The other good news today is did our social worker (Stephanie Birdwell-Bighorn) finally found a hole to crawl into?

Maybe, Keith Moore has figured out Skenandore left him a mess? We’re pretty sure he figured out that it takes more than promises or good intentions to get BIE to move? We are actually hopeful that this negotiated move means Moore doesn’t want Haskell to lose its accreditation? The real higher education legacy of Echohawk-Skenandore-Birdwell-Bighorn.

For our regular readers, any time we make a mistake we will apologize and provide the correct information. So far, as LJW knows full well, we can provide backup for all our facts. Our opinions are our own.

haskellnews commentary 1/21/2011

Is enrollment down at Haskell Indian Nations University?

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Is enrollment down this semester at Haskell Indian Nations University?

Instead of its normal 900 student enrollment, could it be hovering around 590 students this semester? Maybe, some of the tribes, students and parents heard that they were only graduating nine percent of their students and sent them elsewhere?

Maybe they heard about the guess who is president at Haskell this week? So the students went elsewhere?

Maybe they heard about George Tiger and all of the problems he is having with his own tribe (www.thevoicesofcourage) and decided he should definitely not be President of The Haskell Board of Regents? So, the students went elsewhere?

Maybe they heard about Princess Crazyhair (A.K.A Julia Goodfox) helping to organize and encourage Haskell students to take trips Palestine? So, the students went elsewhere?

Maybe, they heard about the kid being put into a coma, and the recent rapes, and arrests on campus? (Has Haskell ever passed the National Incident Management System ( NIMS) requirements)? So, the students went elsewhere?

Maybe, the good students are tired of the bad students always being readmitted, by JA? So, the students went elsewhere?

Maybe, the students are afraid the some powers to be will make Venita Chenault the next president of Haskell? So, the students went elsewhere?

Maybe, they are just good and tired of everything that is going on at Haskell, including no leadership. So, the students just went elsewhere?

haskellnews commentary Jan 18 ,2011

Dr. Linda Sue Warner leaves Haskell Indian Nations University; Accepts new post.

Dr. Linda Sue Warner has accepted a new post within the Bureau of Indian Education and resigned as President of Haskell Indian Nations University, in Lawrence, Kansas. The announcement was made earlier today by Mr. Larry Echohawk, Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs and months ago by George Tiger.

In the time that she was on campus, Dr. Warner tried to make vast improvements at Haskell, which were often met with criticism from The Haskell Board of Regents, who twice took a vote of no confidence against her. (We wonder how many times Dr. Warner took a vote of no confidence on them). However, this is a Board of Regents (many of whom themselves hold less then a bachelor’s degree and have been on Haskell’s board for way too many years), who since Dr.Warner’s departure from campus over a year ago, have stood by and let graduation rates drop to less than any other post-secondary institution we can find, the same Board of Regents that expected to get paid the minute they set foot on campus and the same Board that let the crime on Haskell’s campus get out of hand. You can thank Stephanie Birdwell and Larry Echohawk for supporting the Regents.

Improvements at Haskell somehow threatened them, and other members of the Haskell faculty (especially the ones who were called on the carpet for not doing their jobs).

Dr. Warner was way ahead of her time for the Haskell bureaucracy, at least she tried. Today the country will try to right itself as it elects new leaders; it is too late for Haskell and Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute.

We tip our hats to Dr. Linda Sue Warner and wish her the best in her new endeavors.

haskellnews commentary Nov 02, 2010

A New Trail of Tears?

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President Barack Obama’s political appointment for Assistant Secretary of InteriorIndian Affairs, Mr. Larry Echohawk appears to have embarked on a mission to bring national attention to the “state” of Indian education by journeying his own Trail of Tears.

In the last year, Assistant Secretary Echohawk has cried at Brigham

Young University, wept openly at The Pawnee Nation, shed tears at Haskell Indian Nations University and last week in San Diego at the National Indian Education Association he is reported to have dropped a crocodile tear or two.

It appears that Echohawk has now traveled the entire nation, north south east and west weeping. Is this apology Indian Country has been waiting for from the federal government?

Echohawk does not appear to be able to contain the mortification he has found in Bureau of Indian Education schools when he talks to Indian students and parents. Assistant Secretary Echohawk has now lasted longer than the last half dozen or so political appointments at that level, but surely the stress of such emotional commitment to Indian children must be getting to him.

It’s a good thing Stephanie Birdwell-Bighorn and Venida Chenault are social workers and can step up to counsel him.

Of course, we think it would be a better thing if  President Obama could appoint someone who actually did something positive for Indians kids instead of hiring and promoting totally unqualified people and then bawling because they screw up. But that’s because we believed President Obama had an Indian agenda—one that looked at education.

Likely you did too.

haskellnews commentary

Oct 11, 2010

Does Anyone Care about Haskell Indian Nations University’s Leadership Problems?

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A video came out in The Lawrence Journal World on Sept 29, 2010 (Link: www2.ljworld.com/news/2010/sep/29/haskell-gets-16-million-federal-grant-make-ac) on it two Haskell students said Haskell needs more staff and one of them states that Haskell “staff are hard to find”. Of course they are, without, any true leadership in place, they are like little kids in a candy store.

Haskell doesn’t need more staff, they need staff that can actually find their way to work, correct ? And once they do stay there, work and not hide behind closed office doors, or bring their adult or minor children to work with them, correct ? Or, not put curtains up in their office windows, so the students can’t tell if they are in or not, correct ?

Here’s a policy suggestion no Haskell employee shall date the students? Nor come to work drunk or high? Why can’t those policies be put into place and if they already ? Why are Haskell employees not fired for disobeying them? Or are they ? Or are they caught and still employed by Haskell ? If Haskell has that type of leadership who can the students look up to ?

What about this for a policy ? If an employee leaves their office they will put a note on the door stating where they are at and what time they will return and then actually come back at that time? And if they aren’t then the student is to contact Michael S. Black Director of the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Washington D.C. and let him know about it. Since there is currently no leadership at Haskell, then the students need to go straight to the top.

One more policy: The Haskell instructor does not show up to teach the class? So a substitute is found? Instead of Haskell students being sent out of the classroom without the one thing they came to Haskell Indian Nations University for… an education, so many Haskell students are leaving without one.

With Dr. Linda Sue Warner, Haskell’s President still on detail ( which has now lasted a year ), Haskell has no real leadership and it’s showing…. the students aren’t graduating, at least 91-93% of them are NOT graduating.

When will Haskell’s leadership problems be resolved? For now The American Indians students who attend Haskell are suffering because it, the numbers don’t lie.

Does anyone care? Larry Echohawk where are your tears and promises of change for Haskell at now ? Maybe it’s time to be moving some of your top people around. You could start with putting Stephanie Birdwell-Bighorn back in the social work department, from which she hails, restructure your Haskell Board of Regents, bring Dr. Warner back to Haskell and try getting rid of some of those Haskell employees who are obviously not doing their jobs……

Note: Many of our readers have ask if Senator Pat Roberts has given up on Haskell ? The answer is no. It is our understanding that Senator Pat Roberts and his Kansas Delegation continue working to resolve Haskell’s problems.

haskellnews commentary

Sept 05, 2010

Is Haskell Indian Nations University Breaking The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution?

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With all of the talk from Stephanie Birdwell-Bighorn about making Haskell Indian Nations University a “premier university”, we can’t help but wonder why the school would possibly be stuck in the days of when it was a boarding school and continue with room checks?

Rooms checks at Haskell are done by housing personnel to see if students are keeping their rooms clean, if not the chance exist that they can lose housing and in the case of many Haskell students that would mean going home and not finishing school. With a nine percent graduation rate can Haskell really afford this?

Student rooms are checked for cleanliness and to see if the bed is made. These checks are done when most students are in classes. If a student is running late that day should they worry about making their bed or getting to class? Who wants someone in their living quarters when they are not there?

Is it really legal for dorm staff to be entering these rooms to see if a room is clean? These are not safety checks done by the safety officer and her staff, these are cleanliness checks. They are done once a week every week that school is in session.

They better be looking into this before some Haskell student wises up and sues the school over it.

Here is what the United States Constitution and FEDERAL LAWS HAVE TO SAY ABOUT IT:

“Virtually all room searches at public institutions are governed by the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution, made applicable to the states by the Fourteenth Amendment. The Fourth Amendment protects “[t]he right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures,” and provides that no search warrants shall issue “but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” To be “reasonable” and thus lawful under the Fourth Amendment, a search must normally be conducted pursuant to a search warrant supported by probable cause. Conducting a search in violation of a student’s Fourth Amendment rights can render public university employees, and potentially the university itself, liable for damages under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. In addition, any evidence of criminal activity obtained in the search likely will be suppressed in ensuing criminal proceedings, and any subsequent investigation of criminal activity may be tainted as “fruit of the poisonous tree. Public institutions also may be subject to a state constitution’s analogous “search and seizure” provisions. These state constitutional provisions sometimes provide even greater protections against warrantless searches and seizures than does the Fourth Amendment. Courts will not uphold provisions in housing agreements that require a student to broadly waive all of his or her Fourth Amendment rights as a condition of campus housing”.

Link: http://www.calstate.edu/Gc/hot_topics_012109.shtml

You would expect a Mormon man (Larry Echohawk) to keep his word, so far no changes, only tears. The same people who lost Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute by The North Central Higher Learning Commission are still in charge of Haskell.

Mr. Echohawk is an attorney having come from The “Y” BYU to The BIA.

Maybe ….he can at least get what appears to be, illegal room checks at Haskell stopped?

haskellnews commentary September 29, 2010

Leadership at Haskell Indian Nations University slowly crumbles: School to lose Safety Officer.

It started with the detailing out of Haskell’s School President, Dr. Linda Sue Warner, almost a year ago and has continued on a slow, but, steady downcline every since.

We are speaking of leadership at the school.

First, one of the best, brightest and most distinguished presidents that Haskell has ever had, Dr.Linda Sue Warner, a women who holds a Ph.D from Penn State, was accepted in Harvard and has spent her entire life helping to educate Native Americans, was detailed out of the school, by Stephanie Birdwell-Bighorn.

Birdwell-Bighorn, a much lesser educated Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) (holds only a master’s in social work) employee, with no experience in the field of education, oversees all of the BIE schools (recent articles are proving that the BIE runs one of the most distressed school systems in the United States). Apparently experience in education is not needed, if one is only going to educate Native Americans. Can you name another United States school system that would tolerate this?

We are slowly watching Haskell lose its leadership. The latest casualty in the Haskell leadership fiasco is Deborah Thompson. Ms. Thompson is Haskell’s Safety Officer and one of the heads of its Facilities Department, she is also one of Haskell’s crème de la crème employees. Often working early mornings into late nights. Any threat of bad weather or danger at the school brings her running. Not to mention the millions of dollars that she has bought into the school through all of the grants, she has written. Her departure in October will be irrecoverable for Haskell.

As has been the lose of the following Haskell employees: Dr. Ted Wright (who admits that employees bullied him right off of the Haskell campus), Dr. Russell Blackbird (who also admits being bullied off of the school’s campus), Coach Ted Juneau (a wonderful man ,who is as much loved and admired by the Lawrence community ,as he was at Haskell), again, you have Stephanie Birdwell-Bighorn who oversaw Coach Juneau’s demise as well as the others.

One of the issues that the Higher Learning Commission quoted on Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute lost of accreditation, was, the turn over and lack of leadership at the school.

Apparently, it is not looking too good for Haskell either, with the lose of at least five of its key leaders in less then a year.

haskellnews commentary, Sept 14,2010.

Math, Reading Gap Among Native American Students.

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By CHRISTINE ARMARIO Associated Press Writer
June 30, 2010 (AP)

Native American students at schools overseen by the federal Bureau of Indian Education performed significantly worse on national standardized tests in reading and math compared with those in public schools.

The National Indian Education Study released Wednesday found lags in achievement and persistent gaps among Native American students and their peers. There was also a significant disparity among Native American students depending on the type of school they attend, according to the U.S. Department of Education study.

Those in public schools, and particularly those in schools where Native American students represent less than 25 percent of the population, consistently scored higher than their peers who attend schools heavily populated by Native Americans. The most stark contrast was seen among those who attend Bureau of Indian Education schools, which were created to provide quality education to Native Americans.

The bureau oversees 183 schools on 64 reservations in 23 states, a majority of which are run by tribes. They educate an estimated 44,000 students — less than 10 percent of all Native American children nationwide.

In reading, fourth grade students at Bureau of Indian Education schools scored an average of 181 on a 500 point scale on the National Assessment of Educational Progress — 25 points lower than Native Americans attending public schools. There was a 23 point gap among eighth grade students. Similar gaps were seen in math.

Poverty, less access to resources and difficulty obtaining and retaining teachers to work in tribal areas could be part of the problem, researchers said.

“If I could pinpoint it, I could bottle it and sell it and solve the problem,” said Bart Stevens, deputy director of school operations for the Bureau of Indian Education. “It’s one that we keep plugging at, and a lot of things that impact our students are not necessarily within our control, as with any school system.”

Overall, Native American students are struggling, with more than a third scoring below the basic level in reading and math, according to the study. Those scores have remained basically unchanged since 2005.

“The fact that our American Indian and Alaska Native students have not made any progress since 2005 is alarming and cause for major concern,” said Rep. George Miller, D-Calif., chairman of the House Education and Labor Committee.

The American Indians’ scores were similar to those of black and Hispanic students.

Kerry Venegas of the National Indian Education Association said the challenges facing Bureau of Indian Education schools are similar to those in large, urban schools — but exacerbated. On some reservations, unemployment hovers at 70 percent and graduation rates are low.

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan expressed his dismay at the situation at a National Press Club luncheon in 2009, in which he described having visited a reservation in Montana where the dropout rate was as high as 65 percent. Teachers told him only one student had graduated from college in the past six years.

“If we can’t help those Native American children be successful over the next couple of years, than I think I personally would have failed,” Duncan said.

The study also included a look at the integration of Native American culture into education. Forty-three percent of fourth grade students said their teachers did integrate Native American culture and history into class.

The issue of retaining Native American culture is not lost among people like Harold Dusty Bull, 60, vice president of the National Johnson O’Malley Association, a nonprofit educational organization. He recalled how in the 1940s Native American children were sent to government boarding schools where they were stripped of their culture and language.

“It started out with bad history, and I don’t think it’s ever really overcome it yet,” he said.