MHS Athletes Get Motivational Speaker–But He Ain’t Cheap

Friday, Oct 30, 2009 10:00am  |  COMMENTS (47)

d-west-portrait-suit-wide-b.jpgInteresting news before Tuesday’s big vote on whether to elect the board of ed in Montclair
In an effort to smarten up Montclair High School’s football players, the school district hired motivational speaker Duane “D” West, a national talking head, to the tune of $65,000.
According to NJ.com, the local jocks are scoring 2.0s when the highest GPAs are 4.6. So they’ll attend an 8th period class designed to motivate them to score touchdowns in classroom as well as on the field. Football coach Kevin Richberg came up with the idea.

Using $50,000 in federal stimulus funds for early-intervention programs, the district is paying West to teach the class every two weeks for six months, along with his team of celebrity athletes such as Odessa Turner, who won a Super Bowl playing for the New York Giants, and Johnny Davis, another Super Bowl champ with the San Francisco 49ers. They will serve as mentors.

He’s getting another $15,000 to speak at Glen Field and Mt. Hebron middle schools.
Question of the day: Anyone out there know how to become a motivational speaker?

47 Comments

  1. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 11:15 am

    What Kristen fails to mention is that this is Obama’s federal stimulus money.
    at 50K that’s only $4166 per class!
    pretty stimulating.
    Thank GOD Obama is saving jobs!

  2. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 11:16 am

    well, I guess the quote mentions the stimulus. ok.

  3. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 11:22 am

    Here’s how it went down:
    $65,000 lands, (THUD) on the desk of Alvarez. Tagged for “early-intervention programs” and part of the Obama’s stimulus. The rule is it has to be “early-intervention” and, like all stimulus money, SPENT RGHT NOW (the whole idea of “stimulus”).
    Alvarez calls a meeting:
    Alvarez:
    “Everyone in my office! Chop-chop!”
    (Lackey #1, Lackey #2 and Lackey#3 rush in with pens and pads in hand)
    Alvarez:
    So what do we got ready in the way of early-intervention programs in the pipeline guys, we got $65,000 one-time federal dollars. Ready? Go!”.
    Lackey #1:
    “well, we don’t really have any one-off program plans, chief. We got lots of ideas for continuing, unionized, long-term, continuously funded stuff. But nothing ready to go for a quickie one-time program. ”
    Alvarez:
    “We gotta spend it! Use it or lose it, people! Let’s go lets’ go!”
    Lackey #2:
    “Oh, I might know of something”
    Alvarez:
    “Yes? Ok. You, GO!”
    Lackey #2:
    “Coach was yammering on about some ‘motivational speaker’ idea he had for the guys. That could maybe be a one-time thing”
    (silence for 3 seconds)
    Alvarez:
    “Great! You (speaking to Lackey #3) get the motivational speaker guy on the phone!”
    (dialing…)
    (Lackey #3 mumbling in background on phone, Alvarez speaks over mumbling to Lackey #1)
    “See? This is exactly what I was telling you about, this job is all about fast paced, decision mak….”
    Lackey #3:
    “Excuse me chief, he says he could come up with something for 50 grand over six months – meeting twice a month”
    Alvarez:
    “Great!! Can we pay him up front?”
    Lackey #3:
    “he says yes”
    Alvarez:
    “We still have 15 grand left. Can he also do something in the elementary schools for 15 grand?”
    (mumbling on phone)
    Lackey #3:
    “he wants to know ‘like what?’”
    Alvarez:
    “I DON’T KNOW! Something motivational! 15 Grand.”
    Lackey #3:
    “he says ‘yes’ chief.”
    Alvarez:
    “Done!”
    (quietly to self)
    “Alvarez, old boy, you’ve done it again!”

  4. POSTED BY Annette Batson  |  October 30, 2009 @ 11:24 am

    Holy crap, for a 40 minute class? That’s $104.17 per minute. Sick.

  5. POSTED BY Crankinmontclair  |  October 30, 2009 @ 11:30 am

    Apparently the $50,000 is for 22 kids, making that just under $2300 per child. That’s pretty pricey. And is their accountability?

  6. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 11:38 am

    ” And is their accountability?”
    Unfortunately Obama has 3 more years.
    Here’s my motivational program for football players with 2.0 averages:
    “until you have a 3.0 average. You’re off the team”.

  7. POSTED BY jerseygurl  |  October 30, 2009 @ 11:41 am

    The decision to use that money for a group of football players who should NOT be allowed to play with those grades was beyond wasteful. Time to elect a new BOE.

  8. POSTED BY Debbie Galant  |  October 30, 2009 @ 11:41 am

    Think of all the tutors they could have hired for that money. That would have helped the economy and addressed the same problem.

  9. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 11:46 am

    It’s is a stupid decision on the part of the BOE, grul. To be sure. But stupider still is for Obama to hand out borrowed dollars enabling this kind of stupidity.
    Just think this kind of thing is happening a million times over all around the US.
    Or, really, make that 787 billion times.

  10. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 11:49 am

    Debbie, since you’re a reporter and all maybe you could find out why tutors weren’t hired. I’ll bet you’ll find it didn’t meet the stimulus criteria or the money couldn’t be spent in the time frame required.
    Stimulus money isn’t for long range programs. Obama want’s is spent NOW. That’s how “stimulus” works.

  11. POSTED BY jerseygurl  |  October 30, 2009 @ 11:51 am

    Still, ROC. Why football players with bad averages? Even if the money had to be spent now and had to meet certain criteria, the BOE surely could have done better than this.

  12. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 11:54 am

    I agree gurl. But probably not much better. Who knows? It probably depends on the requirements. Perhaps some enterprising journalist will ask.
    But really, this is pretty much how human beings spend “free” money they don’t have to earn.
    They BLOW it…

  13. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:03 pm

    It’s amazing to me that the same people who see the folly in building a new school and THEN figuring out how to use it don’t see the same pattern in the 800 billion stimulus.
    It’s the same thing, “quick! hand out 800 billion” and figure out hot to spend it later.

  14. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:07 pm

    p.s. “4.6 GPA” not that there’s grade inflation or anything….

  15. POSTED BY jerseygurl  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:11 pm

    Not really ROC. The stimulus package was about putting money back into the economy quickly when it was about to fall off the edge of a cliff. Kind of like cutting taxes or giving people a tax rebate check to go out and spend. It’s putting money in the hands of people for the sole purpose of injecting it back into the economy.
    Building a new school is usually done when an the existing school system can no longer contain the number of students and a continued growth in the school age population has been forecasted.

  16. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:15 pm

    “It’s putting money in the hands of people for the sole purpose of injecting it back into the economy.”
    Oh I now gurl. A brilliant plan as I am quite sure Mr. Duane D West can fully attest!.
    Now get out there and spend Mr. West. Stimulate us! Obama and jerseygurl are depending on it!

  17. POSTED BY jerseygurl  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:15 pm

    Sorry for the typos. I can’t manage to work and post at the same time so I’m going back to work!

  18. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:22 pm

    p.s.
    So what you are saying gurl is that the better way to stimulate the economy is to put the money BACK into the hands of normal people in the way of tax rebates or, perhaps say, in the form of lower taxes?
    You know, with the hope that millions of Americans might spend the money a little more wisely than Alvarez just did?
    The debt is the same. LIberals want the government to spend it (like Alvarez just did) and conservatives want to put it back in to the hands of everyone.

  19. POSTED BY walleroo  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:23 pm

    It would be great if Ms. Galant & Co. did some digging here, but the last thing I care about is whether or not Obama should have handed out stimulus money a few months ago, when everyone thought the world was about to end. I’d much rather see local officials pinned and wriggling to the wall trying to explain why they thought spending $65k on one motivational speaker for a handlful of kids.
    Perhaps the whole idea was to motivate the kids by presenting them with a model of how one guy can strike it rich.

  20. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:27 pm

    Remember kids. The government isn’t big enough! Let’s centralize more of our economy and put it in the hands of the feds!
    As walleroo says “I really don’t care who had the bright idea of putting 50,000 gallons of gasoline in my basement, I want to know WHO WAS SMOKING DOWN THERE!”

  21. POSTED BY Kit Schackner  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:28 pm

    Roc, the stimulus is credited for last quarter’s economic growth. It has had an impact on both the stock market and consumer confidence. Given the depth and danger of the financial meltdown, even McCain might have resorted to a stimulus package
    as an emergency resuscitation.
    That said, Montclair’s use of it is an outrage.

  22. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:32 pm

    “Roc, the stimulus is credited for last quarter’s economic growth.”
    right you are kit. And I’m sure Mr. West’s consumer confidence is way UP!
    The question is should you inject 787 billion dollars into the economy via government spending or by rebate or lower taxes? Who will spend it more wisely and productively into the economy?
    The Mr. Alvarez’s of the world or the Kit Schackner’s of the world?
    This little episode is just 65,000 points of data I suppose.

  23. POSTED BY jerseygurl  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:34 pm

    NO ROC, I am not saying putting money into the hands of normal people via a tax rebate is better. If we are running two wars and operating at a deficit that money is still being borrowed.
    I am saying that our BOE did a crappy job of spending the money they were given.

  24. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:40 pm

    the BOE did do a crappy job. As will most bureaucracies when they’re handed “free” money.
    Check out Obama’s own stats: http://www.recovery.gov/transparency/pages/home.aspx
    Click on NJ.
    210 million to create 622 jobs.
    Why, that’s only $337,433 per job! Of course we DID get all that motivational speaking too!

  25. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:51 pm

    and walleroo, you can investigate all you want and get solemn promisees from local bureaucrats to spend more wisely all you want.
    But if there was no other way to cobble together a “program” to fit the specs of the “grant” not only will people shrug, they will pat Alvarez on the back for a job well done.
    As the gurl says herself “there’s no way the township is going to send back the money”

  26. POSTED BY Schooled  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:51 pm

    I was at least relieved to hear it would be over a period of 6 months and not a one-off talk. Granted, over 5,400 a class (did I get that correct?) is a huge amount to spend for motivational speaking. But it mentions that famous (to the athletes, not to me) players will be mentors. Also, from experience, tutors can help if students are motivated already, but they won’t do any good if the kids just don’t care. I think it sounds like this guy could work these players’ attitudes towards academics a little. At least up to some sort of B (3.0) status, let’s hope.
    The amount of money spent scares me, but I don’t think it’s a complete waste. Hopefully, it will start a culture of scholar-athletes in MHS.

  27. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 12:54 pm

    “It’s only $5400 per 40 minute class, but let’s hope it makes things better”
    oh, Schooled, you’ve clearly spent too much time on the porch reading the NYT and listening to NPR!

  28. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 1:08 pm

    That recovery website is terrific.
    The ASPIRA association (a hispanic “Investment in Latino Youth” organization) got $440 million. They spent 30,000 just down the road in Kearny to
    “Educate the ends users how to install the digital TV.”
    Certainly not as valuable as motivational speaking but up there, right?

  29. POSTED BY Walter Mitty  |  October 30, 2009 @ 1:16 pm

    Well, this sure helps me make up my mind about how to vote on the elected school board question next Tuesday. Is anyone still for keeping the same old lot that brings us this?

  30. POSTED BY KatebirdRex  |  October 30, 2009 @ 1:30 pm

    Here’s how it goes down in ROC’s computer cave:
    Trembling with anticipation, ROC clicks on article about federal stimulus money stupidly spent by local BOE.
    Blood rising to his face in a mixture of glee and rage, he raises his fist to the sky and shrieks:
    “OBAMA! OOOOOBAAAAAAAAAAAAMAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!” [snuffle, grunt, growl] “*&%KING OBAAAAAAAAAAMAAAAAAAA! IT. IS. ALWAYS. OBAMA! Must post! MUST POST!!!!!”
    ROC cracks his knuckles and gets to work, ensuring that he out-types all other posters on the board to keep bringing the topic back to his favorite of all time: How Them Pinko Liberal Jag-offs Keep Spending All Of HIS Hard-Earned MONEYYYYYYYY!
    [Howling, face turning purple] “OOOOOOOOBAAAAAAAAMAAAAAA! OH! BAH! MAH! AIIIIIIIEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!! MY MONEY, AUUUUUUUGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!”
    ROC posts 27 more rants over the course of an hour, demonstrating again just how hard-earned his money must be since his time is so precious. He figures he *must* be converting some of them Pinko Liberal Jag-offs to his way of thinking, what with all of this effort!
    Collapsing in post-posting bliss, ROC lights a cigar and contemplates which of his Hummers he should drive over to Starbucks for a nice Frappuccino.
    [FADE TO BLACK]

  31. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 1:32 pm

    http://www.recovery.gov/transparency/pages/RecipientProjectSummary.aspx?AwardIDSUR=44021&AwardType=C
    Looks like that’s all AISPIRA spent $417,000,000 on. Plugging in digital boxes for hispanics.
    Worth it right? How else would all of those tv sets gotten plugged in.
    It’s inspired thinking like this that has prevented our economy from going over a cliff!

  32. POSTED BY jerseygurl  |  October 30, 2009 @ 2:15 pm

    Katiebird – that’s beginning of an excellent treatment for a documentary. What shall we call it?

  33. POSTED BY Spicoli  |  October 30, 2009 @ 2:21 pm

    Matt Foley would have done this for a fraction of that price!

  34. POSTED BY Debbie Galant  |  October 30, 2009 @ 3:00 pm

    Chris Swenson of Tutoring Club of Montclair has had trouble posting a comment. But he sent this message for me to post:

    If the $65,000 had been spent at the Tutoring Club of Montclair, according to our current rates this would have bought 2080 hours of tutoring. If those hours were spread among the 22 students each would have received about 94.5 hours of tutoring.
    With our individualized curriculum our students progress an average of 1 academic year in a subject every 30 hours of tutoring. In other words if a student were two grade levels behind in core subject such as reading (math, writing,etc) we would expect to get him a full year ahead within 90 hours-progressing 3 full years.

  35. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 3:30 pm

    Can the grant money be used for tutoring? It would be nice to know why such an obvious choice wasn’t made. But it would take some reporting to find out.

  36. POSTED BY Schooled  |  October 30, 2009 @ 3:48 pm

    How sweet that you’re connecting my responses to different posts. And for all the poking fun you do at DG et al, you should know that paraphrasing (wrongly) what someone has said should never have quotation marks around it. It should be tinted in yellow.

  37. POSTED BY cathar  |  October 30, 2009 @ 4:30 pm

    Did any of the Baristas’ crack editorial staff even bother to go to West’s own web site on this one, Debbie?
    I did, and it’s maddeningly incomplete and woefully short on specifics. But I did notice the claim that for 85% (a very specific figure) of his childhood in Newark, he lived without heat and hot water there. The website also claims that Duane West is a former professional football player (which could include, to be fair, the old USFL, the Arena Football league’s assorted levels, the WFL and even the short-lived XFL), but it also gives his collegiate alma mater as Rutgers Newark. Which of course has never had a football team.
    Most schools merely ask a former player, prominent alum or coach to come in and give a motivational speech for free. Montclair, however, pays someone to set up an entire costly program of possibly dubious value. (We won’t know until the first report card, at the very least.) This is certainly an interesting use of Federal stimulus funds, but not quite what I divined as the original intent when the various stimulus packages were rushed through Congress.
    And I of course await the inevitable spate of negative votes for my journalistic skepticism here, too.

  38. POSTED BY Spicoli  |  October 30, 2009 @ 4:31 pm

    So let me see if I have this correct. The district claims OVER and OVER that there is no funding for the SAIL (gifted) Program, and as a result it stinks. But… we can get $65K for 22 football players who have C averages? WTF!
    Vote for an elected school board on Tuesday.

  39. POSTED BY Right of Center™  |  October 30, 2009 @ 4:44 pm

    “Is anyone still for keeping the same old lot that brings us this?”
    I have to admit I’m now leaning towards voting for the elected board.

  40. POSTED BY walleroo  |  October 31, 2009 @ 1:17 am

    Dear Baristas, would you please make fixing Chris Swenson’s access to these comments pages a top priority? His presence here on a regular basis would be most welcomed. He can post under “walleroo” if he is so inclined. I would gladly yield.

  41. POSTED BY walleroo  |  October 31, 2009 @ 1:18 am

    I have to admit I’m now leaning towards voting for the elected board.
    Oh fer chrissake. Wake me up when you’ve made up your mind.

  42. POSTED BY walleroo  |  October 31, 2009 @ 1:21 am

    On second thought, I like the new, elitist ROC. I’m kind of hoping you vote for the appointed board and that vote stands. Then I’ll be able to Lord it over you on these pages ad infinitum for being an elitist. Hell, you already live in a mansion on Upper Mountain Ave. and your wife works for the BOE. doesn’t she, David?

  43. POSTED BY HidingInBaristaville  |  October 31, 2009 @ 7:50 pm

    Dear walleroo,
    Whatsamatter u Chris Swenson can’t write directly to the barista?

  44. POSTED BY peplercraz  |  November 03, 2009 @ 8:59 pm

    What’s wrong with you people? The district hires consultants all the time to provide services from outside sources. Why does Mr. West’s program fall into so much scrutiny? I could interject but suffice it to say that perhaps if the targeted group looked a little different there would be less interest. This man is nationally known for his programs and outreach efforts. His results are unprecedented for reaching kids that others have not been able to reach. Folks do your homework so you don’t come across the wrong way. Perhaps if we had paid more attention to these young men before, they would higher GPAs.

  45. POSTED BY Shame On You Montclair  |  November 04, 2009 @ 2:59 am

    Wow,
    It all sounds like racism in America to me. This is the typical response when a black man in America is successful and making a global difference in the community, particularly with children. Do you know all the facts regarding the program, no? The Montclair School District is consulting with Pro Athletes, an educational leadership consulting company, not and individual Mr. West as reported by the Star Ledger.
    A renowned minority educational leadership consultant who is one of America’s leading youth experts nationally is placed on the chopping block, because his company provides leadership support to school districts. Racism!! The white owned educational consulting companies are benefiting from billions of dollars in stimulus funds and money spent each year on educational consulting service and products in our schools. Come on, a black owned company, a minority business man is placed on notice in the public because he secured an educational contract in the Montclair School District! How frivilous is that, nothing else to report in the media! Point the finger at a honest, hard working black man who is making a difference in the schools and taking care of himself legally. Tell me , what is this really about?
    How many white consulting firms and companies financial consulting information with the Montclair School District is being reported in the Star Ledger and discussed in the news? D. West is a black man who has a proven track record of success in America and in Montclair Schools. Shame on Montclair. That was reported because it is positive news!
    How many white consultants are being talked about on the national media wire who have educational contracts in the schools. I can almost guarantee that there are white owned consulting companies and vendors that have secured over two hundred thousand dollars for their services. Racism….
    The negative dialogue on this blog is a joke! The district is doing a great job with the stimulus money. Mr. West’s consulting company is facilitating curriculum based workshops for students, teachers, and parents. The district is consulting with Pro Athletes, over ten consultants, not one individual as reported by the New Jersey Star Ledger. Are you aware of the parental involvement support for parents, the leadership workshops and after school in-home support services that was not mentioned? No, wow, how juvenile is the judgment and irrational reactions! Impartial, responsible adults seek all the facts and truth before insulting others and posting nasty comments on a blog.
    This goes out to all the negative people who rushed to judgment and took the blind leap into ignorance and attacked the board members, the Superintendent, staff members and D. West’s integrity and the value of his program. Did you speak to the Superintendent of Schools and Assistant Superintendent of Schools? No, you threw the district leaders and program under the bus!
    There are approximately 12 – 15 elite professionals working with Pro Athletes consulting program in the district. There are internship opportunities for children, field trips, after school home base support for parents and additional celebrity and leadership mentoring support services. There is no room for racism and politics when school district leaders are position children for successful outcomes. Now district leaders are taken away from their daily jobs to address the media, ignorant blog comments, and insensitive ego driven, power hungry want-to-be Superintendents and Board leaders.
    Mr. West visits children’s homes and talks to families in the community. The Star Ledger reporter who is Caucasian didn’t write about that or the leadership initiatives, or mention one word that the guess Super Bowl Champs said during their visit or include the former NBA Emmy Award Show producer who spoke about technology etc. Why, because it was positive, and all of the facilitators there were black! A negative or contentious twist/story line sells papers!
    There are several Super Bowl Champions working with your district for six months, not one but several; in addition to other elite business professionals, motivational consultants, professional athletes and Mr. West, the renowned TV Personality and Found of the Bound For Greatness Celebrity Leadership Program. The reporter didn’t mention that! What a slant and twist! Therefore, the funding for this program doesn’t come close to meeting the value of the elite professionals who are participating in Pro Athletes leadership program at the three schools in Montclair! So, bully and attack the board members, Superintendent, Assistant Superintendent and staff for helping minority students, special needs students, socially and economically disadvantage students and some of the athletes. Your attacks tells a huge story about your integrity and soul!
    This is why elite educational personalities and former professional athletes refuse to work in some school districts in America! There is to much wasted energy and politics with people who don’t no what they are talking about. The children need support and outsides are disconnected from reality. To place Mr. West’s picture or your blog page as if he has done something illegal or wrong and question his work with the children and value as a consultant is reprehensible behavior! This is a CNN story, it’s pure racism and hot air! All of you should be a shame of yourselves, you attack a great man, his program and humanitarian efforts, this is cold and heartless! The children lose. You have spoiled the motivation of the students, teachers, administration, board members, community and all of the members facilitating the program in Montclair! What a shame! Racism….
    Is this about the election! Are adults using the election to create leverage for personal growth at the expense of the children in the district. That’s sick, shame on you! When a black man moves into a position of power and delivers positive change in the community he is a target and an immediate threat.
    Some reporters twist stories and omitted and pertinent information to a story to create chaos and drama. The reporter for the NJ Star Ledger didn’t mention any of Mr. West’s accolades such as being honored by the President’s Office of The United States of America for his dedicated work with children, or Pro Athletes being honored on the WGN TV Network as the General Motors Minority Business of the Week, or Mr. West being a nationally acclaimed On-Air Television Personality who worked with NBC Television (10 years national on-air TV motivational consulting experience), or the fact that he is an author of several books and was voted Americas leading celebrity youth motivational consultant for 9 years straight or mentioned the point of Mr. West speaking to well-over 3 million children in schools from 1992 – 2009 or his sixteen years experience as an educational leadership consultant or his national health and wellness appearances in national magazines and on television or mention the shows he appeared on as a motivational consultant were some of the highest rate shows in daytime-talk-television, or write about him being a renowned wellness personality that was an exclusive endorsed fitness consultant for Nike, Inc. (3 years) and Fila USA (4 years), oh, did you see him on the Oprah Show. You get the point, I will stop there! How many of you with the hot air have achieved what this young man has in the community? Mr. West is recognized and respected globally, and he should be. Shame on you!
    The district took a proactive approach to seek one of America’s leading educational consultants and leaders who has proven track record of success on a national and international level. For this, the district is struck down by inconsiderate, insensitive, rush to judgment, snobs in the community. Racism, racism, racism at it’s best!
    This man speaks to gang members, provides peer mediations, writes leadership strategies for our schools, communities, enhances students character in schools, works with parents, teachers, and saves children’s lives. Mr. West puts his life on the line in the community to help keep our children and the communities safe. Do you walk in the heart of our inner-cities at night and help people, do you walk children home who are out late at night hang around on the streets because their parents are not home and/or on drugs? What a slap in the face by people who don’t have the facts. It is a sad day in Montclair! Racism, racism…..
    The children in the community don’t respect you (the big mouths). Those who rushed to judgment, ask yourselves, what child have I saved and help in my community or in America? What national youth causes I am connected to and leading? What strategies are schools and school districts using that I facilitate? Ignorance is bliss without all of the facts! Check yourselves…..
    I’m glad I don’t live in Montclair with such disrespectful snobs! Countless children value and respect Mr. West’s advise, they look up to him as a role model and leader in the community. You don’t have to appreciate his support or value his professional service as an elite consultant in America. You will respect the children we are working with in Montclair Schools. Close your narcissistic mouths! Did you attend the workshops at any of the schools? Did you know there was proven assessment information from previous facilitation by Pro Athletes in the Montclair School District? Why are we here? The Montclair Public School District took a proactive step to improve its students academic life and it is being criticized! Racism kills dreams, envy destroys communities and nations! Are you a part of the problem?
    Mr. West is a powerful leader in the community who has developed a winning program in the schools that is positioning children, teachers, parents and school districts toward success. Shame on Montclair, find something worthy to do with your time! What legacy are you leaving in the community and/or with children! Shame on Montclair….
    For all of the people hiding behind your computers that are killing our children’s dreams in the schools, please take your fingers off the keypads and be a part of the solutions. Stop typing and talking and do something worthy to combat the gang violence and drugs in the schools! Do something positive with your time to help parents who have lost children to senseless acts of violence. Join a winning community organization and give back to communities that have major issues in the schools. Help the at-risk, socially and economically disadvantaged, and special needs students.
    Check the facts before you start running off at the month, learn how to appreciate a great opportunity for students in your school district. Racism, it smells in Montclair!
    You made this a national issue because of total stupidity! How do you think the children feel who are in the leadership program? You have insulted our children and your district leaders with your insensitive attacks. This is a reflection of the pretentious people who only care about themselves. This is an issue for the NAACP! Before I go, please call the reporter and asked her why she didn’t report a complete story and chose to slant and twist the program. Ask her why she referred to the athletes in the program as jocks of the school as opposed to student leaders. That’s disrespectful! The Star Ledger and the reporter has a responsibility to report true and accurate information and they didn’t! The reporter and the Star Ledger owes the students, school district and community in Montclair an apology.
    Please call the Star Ledger and address them appropriately if you are seeking resolve. The problem is with the New Jersey Star Ledger, not the district leaders or the program! This is a public lynching of a national minority leader, an accomplished black man who loves children. Take care insensitive, narcissistic, egotistical bashers! Racism….. wow!
    Black in America, if you do good follow the rules, stay in school, graduate from college, inspire people of all color, earn a respectable living, live a productive life and commit your life to the community like D. West people will find a way to hang you in public and/or assassinate you like Martin Luther King, Jr.
    Racism in America is the story that should be addressed… Yeah, start on the streets in Montclair first! CNN will not cover this story, the truth of the matter, because the Star Ledger is on the chopping block now for distorting the facts, stretching the truth to sell papers and tarnish the integrity of good people.
    Keep your head up D. West, you are one in a million an American hero.
    Don’t let Montclair get you down….
    God bless you!

  46. POSTED BY Shame On You Montclair  |  November 04, 2009 @ 11:34 am

    Interesting,
    Racism is racism, you will never see it if it slapped you in the face. Mr. West owns a educational consulting company just like thousands of other white own educational consulting company’s. Do you see them on blogs in Montcliar? He runs a successful business and should get paid like everyone else for his service. Racism at its best!
    A black man starts his own consulting business out of college and because he is black and played sports he should provide educational consulting support services and training for free! Am I understanding you? You are asking him not to feed his family and do something he doesn’t like as much because you think he should do it for free. What a joke, he is an educational consultant and motivational speaker.
    He runs a successful business, what does this have to do with professional athletes speaking for free anyway! Do you work for free? Are you asking white consults in the school districts to provide free services? The issues is about stretching the truth and reporting information that was twisted. The issue is about a black man who is doing an outstanding job in your school district who has been isolated and insulted by you and others because he is black!
    A black man exposes elite professional to children and teaches character education strategies from the curriculum book he wrote and you feel his services should be free! What dark dream world are some people living in! Did you know he was a school teacher? Did you read his new book?
    You make no sense, Mr. West is not a Super Bowl Champion like some of the consults on his elite team of professionals.
    The facts, he is a target, because he is a successful black man working in a so called well to do community. Racism smells in the air!
    And just because there is a black President in office doesn’t mean that racism doesn’t exit in America! It is clear, if you are black in America you are treated much differently than whites. Do you know the Mr. West, did you read his books?
    Don’t insult him with the work for free nonsense, because other athletes speak for free. Other athletes are not Mr. West, they started their careers in sports. He started his career in the schools and the community, giving back, working for free! Do you know his personal story? He played professional sports when he was 31 years old. That is when he stepped on to a football field. He was an accomplished educational leadership consultant in the schools and community before professional sports. Mr. West was an author, motivational speaker, and leadership consultant almost ten years before playing the game.
    Did you read his personal story from the roots of poverty? He was a business man and entrepreneur before sports, so what is your irrational excuse to cover the racism in your community now!
    Black men are intelligent enough to build respectable educational consulting companies and play professional sports. This is America, black men can facilitate and bid for educational contracts in our schools like white consultants! Mr. West established his company after graduating from college and attending nursing school. He has been helping children and saving lives for many years. He was homeless at one point, because he gave back, spoke for free, discounted his fees, and wave his speaking fees. He continues to help children and families in need! Who are you to insult him and his work?
    Question, did you read his book, do you know the man!
    • Did you attend any of his presentations?
    • Did you call other schools he worked at in Montclair?
    • Did you speak to the school district leaders, the Superintendent and Assistant Superintendent regarding his program?
    • Do you work to feed your family or do you speak for free in schools nationally because you are a former professional athlete?
    Former Presidents of the United States of America are invited to speak as keynote speakers, they get paid $100,000 plus dollars and receive life long salaries for their service to the country. So, I must assume they should speak for free, give up their homes and stop living too! Racism in America!
    Black men in America can’t win in communities like this! You build more prisons to house minorities and decrease the educational resources to minority students and opportunities to minority owned business and complain when we succeed! What do you want, you are never satisfied.
    Yes, this is a racial issue! You are casing major conflict in the communities nationwide with your senseless comments and attacks a renowned black leader in our community. He is doing an outstanding job in the schools, the community and on national television. Mr. West is delivering wisdom and hope to countless people, all ethnic groups! I am not sure how much you know about him, but he his loved and respected in communities globally!
    Montclair, you have cased enough damage to the children already, if it was your child in the leadership program you would be outraged, grow up! Call the Star Ledger or step up to the district in person and voice your concerns! Children are reading everything you are writing.
    The more you talk the less sense you make. Until you live in a black persons body and experience the day-to-day issues that we experience then you can talk! Racism is an issue and always will be regardless of one Black President.
    Interesting, sitting up on the hill in Montclair sipping on wine, but afraid to walk in our inner-cities, prisons, and disadvantaged neighborhoods to help the less fortunate and to combat crime. What courage you have? keypad pusher… Racism is real in America!
    Read this again:
    Wow,
    It all sounds like racism in America to me. This is the typical response when a black man in America is successful and making a global difference in the community, particularly with children. Do you know all the facts regarding the program, no? The Montclair School District is consulting with Pro Athletes, an educational leadership consulting company, not and individual Mr. West as reported by the Star Ledger.
    A renowned minority educational leadership consultant who is one of America’s leading youth experts nationally is placed on the chopping block, because his company provides leadership support to school districts. Racism!! The white owned educational consulting companies are benefiting from billions of dollars in stimulus funds and money spent each year on educational consulting service and products in our schools. Come on, a black owned company, a minority business man is placed on notice in the public because he secured an educational contract in the Montclair School District! How frivolous is that, nothing else to report in the media! Point the finger at a honest, hard working black man who is making a difference in the schools and taking care of himself legally. Tell me, what is this really about?
    How many white consulting firms and company’s financial consulting information with the Montclair School District is being reported in the Star Ledger and discussed in the news? D. West is a black man who has a proven track record of success in America and in Montclair Schools. Shame on Montclair. The truth was not reported because it would have been positive news about a black man doing amazing things with children! A dubious twist had to be added to the story to sell papers.
    How many white consultants are being talked about on the national media wire who have educational contracts in the schools. I can almost guarantee you that there are thousands of white owned consulting companies and vendors that have secured over 1 -2 hundred thousand dollar contracts in schools including Montclair for their services. Racism… Racism….
    The negative dialogue on the blogs are a joke! The Montclair School District is doing a great job with the stimulus money. Mr. West’s consulting company Pro Athletes is facilitating curriculum based workshops for students, teachers, and parents. The district is consulting with Pro Athletes, over ten consultants, not one individual as reported by the New Jersey Star Ledger. Are you aware of the parental involvement support for parents, the leadership workshops and after school in-home support services that was not mentioned? No, wow, how juvenile is the judgment and irrational reactions! Impartial responsible adults seek all the facts and truth before insulting others and posting nasty comments on blogs.
    This goes out to all the negative people who rushed to judgment and took the blind leap into ignorance and attacked the board members, the Superintendent, staff members and D. West’s integrity and the value of his program. Did you speak to the Superintendent of Schools and Assistant Superintendent of Schools? No, you threw the district leaders and the Bound For Greatness Program under the bus!
    There are approximately 12 – 15 elite professionals working with Pro Athletes consulting program in the district. There are internship opportunities for children, corporate field trips, after school home base support for parents and additional celebrity leadership mentoring support services. There is no room for racism and politics in our schools. Now district leaders are taken away from their daily jobs in the district to address the media, ignorant blog comments, and insensitive ego driven, power hungry want-to-be Superintendents and Board leaders.
    Mr. West visits students homes and talks to families in the community. The reporter who is Caucasian didn’t write about that or the leadership initiatives, or mention one word about the guess Super Bowl Champs said during their visit or include the former NBA Emmy Award Show producer who spoke about technology at the program etc. Why, because it was positive! All of the facilitators in attendance were were black! Reports enjoy writing stories about negative issues affecting the community. A black man doing worthy things is not a money story. A negative or contentious twist and slant to the story line sells papers!
    There are several Super Bowl Champions working with your district for six months, not one but several, in addition to other elite business professionals, motivational consultants, professional athletes and Mr. West, the renowned TV Personality and Found of the Bound For Greatness Celebrity Leadership Program. The reporter didn’t mention that! What a slant and twist! Therefore, the funding for this program doesn’t come close to meeting the value of the elite professionals who are participating in Pro Athletes leadership program at the three schools in Montclair! So, bully and attack the board members, Superintendent, Assistant Superintendent, staff members and D. West for helping minority students, special needs students, socially and economically disadvantage students and some of the athletes. The ignorant comments are reflects of unhappy people!
    This is why elite educational personalities and former professional athletes refuse to work in some school districts in America! There is to much wasted energy and politics with people who don’t no what they are talking about. The children need support and immediate leadership guidance. Most importantly, to post Mr. West’s picture or your blog pages as if he has done something illegal or wrong and to question his work with the children and value as a consultant is reprehensible behavior! This is a CNN story, it’s pure racism! All of you should be a shame of yourselves, you attack a great man, his program and humanitarian efforts. This is cold and heartless! The children lose in this media and public lynching. You have spoiled the motivation of the students, teachers, administration, board members, the community and all of the members facilitating the Pro Athletes leadership program in Montclair Public Schools! What a shame! Racism….
    Was it all about the election! Are adults using the election to create leverage for personal growth at the expense of the children in the district. That is sick, shame on you! When a black man moves into a position of power and delivers positive change in the community he is a target, an immediate threat.
    As we all know, some reporters twist stories and omitted pertinent information to a story to create chaos and drama. The reporter for the NJ Star Ledger didn’t mention any of Mr. West’s accolades such as being honored by the President’s Office of The United States of America for his dedicated work with children, or Pro Athletes being honored on the WGN TV Network as the General Motors Minority Business of the Week, or Mr. West being a nationally acclaimed On-Air Television Personality who worked with NBC Television (10 years national on-air TV motivational consulting experience), or the fact that he is an author of several books and was voted Americas leading celebrity youth motivational consultant for 9 years straight or mentioned the point of Mr. West speaking to well-over 3 million children in schools from 1992 – 2009 or his sixteen years experience as an educational leadership consultant or his national health and wellness appearances in national magazines and on television or mention the shows he appeared on as a motivational consultant were some of the highest rate shows in daytime-talk-television, or write about him being a renowned wellness personality that was an exclusive endorsed fitness consultant for Nike, Inc. (3 years) and Fila USA (4 years), oh, did you see him on the Oprah Show. You get the point, I will stop there! How many of you with the hot air have achieved what this young man has in the community? Mr. West is recognized and respected globally, and he should be. Shame on you!
    The district took a proactive approach to seek one of America’s leading educational consultants and leaders who has proven track record of success on a national and international level. For this, the district is struck down by inconsiderate, insensitive, rush to judgment, snobs in the community. Racism, racism, racism at its best!
    Mr. West speaks to gang members, provides peer mediations, writes leadership strategies for our schools, and communities. He enhances students character in schools, works with parents, teachers, and saves children’s lives. He puts his life on the line in the community to help keep our children and the communities safe. Do you walk in the heart of our inner-cities at night and help people, do you walk children home who are out late at night hang around on the streets because their parents are not home and/or on drugs? What a slap in the face by people who don’t have the facts. It is a sad day in Montclair and America! Racism, racism, racism…..
    Those who rushed to judgment after reading the misleading information in the paper, ask yourselves, what child have I saved and are helping in my community or in America? What national youth causes am I connected to and leading? What strategies are schools and school districts using that I facilitate? Ignorance is bliss without all of the facts! Check yourselves.
    I’m glad I don’t live in Montclair with such disrespectful snobs! Countless children value, admire and respect Mr. West’s advise, they look up to him as a role model and leader in the community. You don’t have to appreciate his support or value his professional service as an elite consultant in America. You will respect the children we are working with in the schools. Close your narcissistic mouths!
    • Did you attend the workshops at any of the schools?
    • Did you read the feedback from the students, teachers and Assistant Superintendent of Schools?
    • Did you know there was proven assessment information from previous workshops hosted by Pro Athletes in the Montclair School District?
    Why are we here? The Montclair Public School District took a proactive step to improve its students academic life and it is being criticized! Racism kills dreams, envy destroys communities and nations! Are you a part of the problem?
    Mr. West is a powerful leader in the community who has developed a winning program in the schools that is positioning children, teachers, parents and school districts toward success. Shame on Montclair, find something worthy to do with your time! What legacy are you leaving in the community and/or with children! Shame on Montclair….
    For all of the people hiding behind your computers that are killing our children’s dreams in the schools, please take your fingers off the keypads and be a part of the solutions. Stop typing and talking and do something worthy to combat the gang violence and drugs in the schools! Do something positive with your time to help parents who have lost children to senseless acts of violence. Join a winning community organization and give back to communities that have major issues in the schools. Help the at-risk, socially and economically disadvantaged, and special needs students.
    Check the facts before you start running off at the month, learn how to appreciate a great opportunity for students in your school district. Racism, it smells in Montclair!
    You made this a national issue because of total stupidity! How do you think the children feel who are in the leadership program? You have insulted our children and school district leaders with your insensitive attacks. This is a reflection of the pretentious people who only care about themselves.
    Before I go, please call the reporter and asked her why she didn’t report a complete story and chose to slant and twist her story. Ask her why she referred to the athletes in the program as jocks of the school as opposed to student leaders. The Star Ledger and the reporter has a responsibility to report true and accurate information and they didn’t! The reporter and the Star Ledger owes the students, school district Mr. West and the community in Montclair an apology.
    Please call the Star Ledger and address them appropriately if you are seeking resolve. Boycott the paper….. The problem is with the New Jersey Star Ledger, not the district leaders or D. West’s program! This is a public lynching of a national minority leader, an accomplished black man who loves children. Take care insensitive, narcissistic, egotistical bashers! Racism, wow!
    Black in America, if you do good, follow the rules, stay in school, graduate from college, help others live their dreams, inspire all people, earn a respectable living, live a productive life and commit your life to the community and children like D. West people will find a way to hang you in public and/or assassinate you like Martin Luther King, Jr.
    Racism in America is the story that should be addressed… Yeah, start on the streets in Montclair first! CNN will not cover this story now, because the truth has been told.
    Keep your head up D. West, you are one in a million, an American hero. Please continue to inspire our children! Don’t let Montclair get you down….
    God bless you!

  47. POSTED BY Mr T  |  November 12, 2009 @ 3:27 pm

    How about their parents giving them some motivational speeches. 2.0 average and they are still allowed to play. Who’s priorities come first? This is very confusing. Good for Duane “D” West. But is this how hard earned tax payers money should be spent. Motivating below average football players. Messed up. There should be a simple rule…if you cant get good grades you dont play.

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