I have been sharing my thoughts on the superintendent candidates, one by one. Last up is Jim Ferguson.
I have been struggling for the last few days to figure out what I would say or not say about Jim Ferguson. I am rarely at a loss for words, but in this case, I am. I want to be fair to all of the candidates. I have tried my best to be fair and state the positives, keeping in mind the future of our school district and how incredibly important this decision is. I have no personal issues with Jim Ferguson whatsoever. By most accounts, he is a good person and a good husband and father. I have no doubt that he cares for the students. To be fair to Jim, I have had the least interactions with him, although we have corresponded and spoken on a few occasions. He has always been polite to me. I think Jim is a nice man, but I have my concerns.
I want to see a change in our administration, and by that, I do not mean all new people. I want to see a change in the mindset. We need an administration that is ethical, professional, transparent and accountable. We need people that truly care about the students and the teachers. We need a central office that supports the teachers and parents and remembers that is what they were hired to do. We need employees that treat others with respect and kindness. We need employees that follow the law, board policies and their MS Educator Code of Ethics. The current administration has created so much division and distrust over the years, and our county has been negatively impacted by these actions. They have allowed some of their chosen ones to run amuck, causing us to lose extremely good, highly qualified educators and administrators. Those that have done wrong have been the ones promoted. It is the running joke in the district, ‘If I mess up bad enough, I will get a promotion to the central office’. How sad is that?!
While I would love to talk solely about Jim Ferguson, it is extremely hard to do, because all that I think of when Jim comes to mind is: Loper, Weeks, the curriculum department, The Truth 1700 FB page, the DeSoto Reform Reform FB page, the Ben Owens FB page, the private investigator, the lie detector, all of the inappropriate and disrespectful barrage of tweets throughout the work day to legislators and citizens, the threats, bullying, illegal use of prescription drugs, DUIs, affairs, and many, many other unprofessional, vile acts that have been committed by those that support Jim both by way of vote and as financial contributors to his campaign. The problem I have with Jim is not Jim but rather his inability to see things for what they are and the fact that NOTHING will change if he is elected. His campaign finance reports and supporters are proving that to be the case.
Everything that I have stood for and fought against is all wrapped up in and hanging their hopes on Jim being elected as superintendent. So regardless of how nice Jim may be, I cannot in good conscience support anyone that will be attached to all of the above. It isn’t Milton Kuykendall that we will be fighting. Milton checked out along time ago and left Weeks and others in charge. So we will be up against the very ones he trained and molded into his way of thinking and shaped to use his business management style. It will be all of those that have done Milton and Weeks’s dirty work and don’t care about doing what’s right or they have been completely desensitized to what is right. These people care about the power, climbing the ladder and the money. Whether people like it or not, this is the truth! So where does this leave me with Jim Ferguson?
I am left feeling uneasy and disappointed, because I want to write really positive qualities about Jim. I want to feel like everything will be ok if he is elected. Jim Ferguson isn’t the problem, but he has too close of a relationship with all of those people and behaviors that ARE our problem. While I do not want to do anything to hurt him, I care more about not hurting our district. We cannot afford to have an extension of the Kuykendall legacy. If Jim is elected, that is exactly the way it will be.