Matthew Farley the Megalomaniac

Caswell Franklyn, Head of Unity Workers Union

Whenever Matthew Farley is out of the news for any extended period, he stage manages a set of circumstances to catapult himself into the headlines. His latest headline grabbing stunt was the suspension of 265 students ostensibly for uniform infringements. Nine chances out of ten, when mass suspensions of school children hit the news; you can be assured that this little megalomaniac, Matthew Farley is the protagonist taking the bows.

One must wonder why is it that of all the 21 government secondary schools principals, only Farley resorts to these extreme tactics. Could it be that he is looking to make a name for himself at the expense of these children abusing them in the process?

Farley is right about one thing: rules must be obeyed. Unfortunately, too often those in authority behave as though rules apply to everyone else. Rules are not only in place for students, there are rules to regulate the conduct of principals as well. And since this principal is such a stickler for adherence to the rules that govern others, you would expect that he follows the letter and spirit of the rules that apply to him zealously. After the news of the suspensions broke, he was a caller on Brass Tacks discussing the issue. That along with his regular appearances as a moderator leaves me to wonder if he is complying with the Code of Conduct and Ethics for the Public Service, particularly paragraph 24 which states:

24. Officers shall not

(a) be editors of any newspaper or directly or indirectly take part in the management of newspapers;

(b) contribute to any newspapers in Barbados or elsewhere on questions that can properly be called political or administrative, but may furnish articles upon subjects of general interest;

(c) make a statement to the media or allow themselves to be interviewed on questions of public policy or on matters affecting the defence, military resources or diplomatic relations of Barbados with the prior approval of the Minister concerned;

(d) make public or communicate to the media or cause to be made public or to be communicated to the media or to unauthorized persons, any documents, papers or information which may come into their possession in their official capacity or make private copies of those documents of papers;

(e) give broadcast talks or engage in any discussion that is being broadcast on any subject that may properly be regarded as of a political or administrative nature, without the prior permission of the Minister concerned; or

(f) disclose or produce in evidence any official document of a confidential character in any court of law without obtaining the previous permission of the Minister.

If Farley wants to enforce the rules, it is only reasonable to expect that he leads by example following the rules that are laid down for him. For his sake, I sincerely hope that he has obtained permission from the Minister for his constant appearances on radio where he discusses matters that seem to conflict with his role as a civil servant otherwise he would not only be a megalomaniac but a hypocrite as well.

By the way, it is within my certain knowledge that the Ministry of Education mandated changing hem lines from two inches above the knee to two inches below because two little girls got pregnant for teachers. Rather than punish the teachers, the Ministry blamed the little girls for putting temptation in the teachers’ way and ordered the hem lines of all girls down.

0 responses to “Matthew Farley the Megalomaniac

  1. @Ping Pong

    It is a good question which the venerable media and particularly the people’s choice (Nation) should seek an answer. Of course many reasons come to mind, a simple one is, some foolish parents were persuade by their daughters that the uniform was too long.

  2. @Caswell

    We are ventilating the issue as we are won’t to do on BU, no excuses being found.

  3. David
    You believe that it is likely that 15 -18% of the children of that school AND their parents are foolish? [If we used the number 267 (suspended children) out of a school roll of 923 that would imply that 29% of the students are foolish! If true, what could one expect of this school?].

    Mathew Farley is certainly an interesting character. Do you remember his very vocal support for the EDUTEC program when he was Principal of St.Mary’s Primary? Such was his support for then Minister of Education, Ms Mottley that it was suggested by some that he was rewarded with the position at the Garrison school! Fast forward a few years, the EDUTEC program has been seen as delivering very much less than promised and Mr Farley is rumoured to have been a candidate for nomination in the S.John by-election for the DLP!

  4. millertheanunnaki

    @ Caswell Franklyn | October 23, 2012 at 6:42 AM |

    You are absolutely right both technically and standing on sound moral ground for “outing” Farley and exposing his vicious closet hypocrisy giving his much touted and paraded role model image. A classic manifestation of this country’s double standards in its “pretentiously false” morality as expressed in the phrase one law for the Medes (underprivileged and socially disadvantaged) and another for the Persians (the political and economic parasites of the society parading as the so-called middleclass and well-heeled).

    He can be placed in the same category of moral deviants as the big up public official who drives an MP vehicle but finds it OK to go behind the GAIA security corridors to purchase duty-free liquor. When are we going to get more info from you on this law breaker in order to expose him?

    We need to be a bit more like the UK in exposing these moral fakes whether alive or dead like Jimmy Saville the paedo and the homosexual paedophile Roman Catholic priests.

    Those who preach morality to the morally unwashed (unclean) masses must themselves be prepared to go under the moral microscope to identify any vestiges of dirt in their character fabric.

    Or for the Judeo-Christian inclined hypocrites: “Let him who is without sin, cast the first stone”. Now Mr. Farley, stop your breaches of the public officers’ code of conduct just to earn extra income and promote your false public image for future political recognition.

  5. Retired Teacher

    @ David & Caswell .
    One just cannot fail to agree with Caswell that a man who spouts off about observing RULES as a means of fostering discipline in his institution CANNOT continue to provide clear examples of the fact that he himself is OFTEN in breach of RULES that should regulate his conduct as a public officer . Mr Farley is one of the modern day school administrators who like the glare of publicity ; he should be taught that the same press which is often used for cheap support may one day have no choice but to serve as an organ of condemnation . There can be no justifiable reason why a school principal has to be straining every day , week , or month to make press / radio headlines . Farley here finds himself hoist with his own petard .

  6. @Ping Pong

    You have provided much to ponder on a day when the government will debate a five hundred thousand dollar request to supplement the coffers of the Transport Board; seems appropriate we should mention the TB when discussing indiscipline.

    Here is what we know. Many issues have converged which has resulted in confusing the core issue, which is to uphold discipline in our schools.

  7. I feelin’ the feelin’ to contribute on political parties … got to mek time. Writing an article don’ come easy for some one with a limited vocabulary … like me … Got to mek time

  8. Granted that rules must be enforced to make any sense and therefore on that score Farley cannot be faulted. The agreed rule appears to be that skirts should be no longer than 2 inches below the knees. So Farley was well within his rights to suspend the nearly 300 children for breach of the apparently Min Ed sanctioned rules if Farley’s teachers measured the skirts with rulers and found that number of children with skirt length that contravened the rules

    But has any one looked at what is actually the length of skirts worn by most girls at most of our Primary and Secondary schools? I would venture a guess that over 90 % of these children at all schools, except perhaps the Graydon Sealy School, wear their skirts at or very slightly above knee length and do not in any way look slack, while a small percentage of the older ones would have gone overboard in wearing noticeably very short skirts. So if this is true then over 90% of the children / parents are thumbing their collective noses at the official rule.

    The normal growth process could account for much of this but it is also possible that parents and the children and most principals and teachers really consider the rule to be an absolutely stupid one and see nothing wrong with girls’ uniforms being at or slightly above knee length especially since the rule appears to have been mainly observed in the breach. If it hadn’t been, every school (primary and secondary) would be having incidents like the Farley hem monitoring police incidents.

    If this is so the real problem might be that the rules need changing to reflect the existing reality in the whole school system. That reality being that in today’s world it might be impossible to enforce a 2 inches below the hem rule without taking draconian steps.

    The other Principals might have accepted this reality but Farley stands out as the only one who is enforcing the rule to the letter.

    Suggest that some other pollster be hired by the Nation or the Ministry to carry out a survey of skirt length (I’m not quite certain how bagginess of Boy’s pants would be objectively measured) at a representative sampling of the Island’s schools.

    But anyone who drops or pick up their sons or daughters or grandchildren at primary and secondary schools could do a random survey of about 10 children and tell us what they find.

    The results could be reported here very simply as;

    School:
    Number of Children observed;
    % with skirts at knee level;
    % with skirts just above the knees;
    % with skirts just below the knees;
    % with skirts that might be 2 ins below the knees;
    % with skirts that might be more than 2 ins below the knees;

    If this is taken up it might provide some objective data as to the scope of the problem. The results might be shocking!

  9. millertheanunnaki

    @ Checkit-Out | October 23, 2012 at 5:05 PM |
    “Granted that rules must be enforced to make any sense and therefore on that score Farley cannot be faulted.”

    Let, therefore, Mr. Himmler of the Graydon Sealy Uniform Enforcement Police be a true rule enforcer and look in the mirror.

    Mr. Farley SSS Commandante, are you adhering to the rules that govern your behaviour as a public officer?

  10. Typically here I see criticisms with no substance, no suggestions as to how to have an orderly school environment.
    Just slack attitudes, platitudes saying the students have done no wrong and an inference that perhaps Mr. Farley would be far better exercised to get on his knees and beg for cooperation.

    If the brickbats are coming from current or future parents perhaps it’s a sign of the inevitable slide to becoming and joining other societies for and of the criminal insane – Caribbean Unity thereby achieved.

  11. You know what turns my stomach more than anything else: it is the hypocritical positions adopted by these holier than thou adults who give the impression that everything about the youth somehow needs correcting. When we were young, we were no better to the adults than the children that are being condemned now. I know respectable grandmothers who were being sought by police after being reported missing when they were young only to be found in some man’s house. In the end they did not turn out badly. I know of one bad-john who turned out to be a priest. The children are not as bad as some of us always make them out to be.

    Another thing that I find puzzling is the school pageants where little girls parade on stage with little more than panties and I don’t hear any condemnation.

  12. A read of the Nation this morning shows that Farley maybe on to something. The other principals are asleep on the job.

  13. @ David
    Let the bushman explain something to you….
    Caswell is ideal for the role of Chairman of the coming National Supervisory Committee precisely because of a number of lifelong traits that he has displayed….

    -He is as malicious as Babsie
    -He knows all sorts of obscure rules and regulations which can frustrate the most tenacious among us
    - He has an inherent suspicion of anyone who demonstrates any kind of altruism.( To Caswell we all are crooks.)
    - he himself is not a “doer” and he is jealous and suspicious of anyone who is….

    In the current political environment, can you think of anyone better suited as a watchdog of the people’s business? Hell, the Jew who led the crowd in calling for the crucifixion of Jesus was probably Caswell’s ancestor… :)

    It is no surprise therefore that Caswell’s stomach is turned. He will leave no stone unturned until he convinces us that Farley has dark motives….
    …talk about a man born for a role…… LOL

  14. @Caswell

    I agree with you, we are too hypocritical as a people with an innate dislike for youth after we have passed that stage. We seem to have forgotten what it was like when we young. Back then when I was in secondary school minis were en vogue and we all wore our uniforms in that fashion with the afro and the pineapple hair styles and the platform shoes and there was nothing vulgar and disrespectful about how we looked.
    We need to understand that these superficial things will be attractive and of interest to the young in our society not that they very awaking minute should be consumed by these things.
    On another note, if every year Mr Farley has to resort to such draconian measures in order for his subjects to adhere to his rules it tells me that he is a very poor administrator, because nobody takes him seriously. If he is going to suspend a student for five days for wearing the incorrect shoes what will he do with a student who is fighting and caught smoking or drinking on the school compound suspend the child for a term? I say will the time suit the crime. Let me remind all of us here that the behaviour displayed at school is a REFLECTION of our society and we need to stop being so judgemental.
    It has been suggested to me that the only place where Mr Farley is a disciplinarian is in the media not even at his school. Food for thought! His method is not working. He cannot be so hard and fast he needs to use his discretion!

  15. Caswell, I agree with you fully, that standards have fallen. I do not blame the youth, but I do blame society i.e,the adults who have put us here, lack of leadership.

    Those of us supporting Farley are not on a bandwagon, we want change. that is all

    Witness falling standards:
    - hospital
    -Courts in a complete mess and looking like the lawyers starting to fight about it , if the reports are right, all heck breaking loose, not only cant get a case finished, but now the lawyers want to throw in the towel.
    - discipline in schools is down, ask ANY teacher in the system about that
    - discipline on the roads is down, now transferred somewhat from the errant minbus culture to the morons speeding about with no braking distance
    - now some crap about the fancy new ‘BWA’ building and Guvment want out, after being all eager about it..

    Innotech better stop before the guvment owe them more than it owes Barack. Better to lose a couple million than lose 50+. The Nation claims Gollop warned guvment that if they stop buildintg they would owe Innotech 50million.

    Yuh tink they care? They owe Barack more than that and ent brekking a sweat!

    Tell me, do you really think this could have happened in Barrow or Adams time?

    REALLY??!!!!!!!

    And we used to laugh at Antigua and T&T for being in a mess.

    Let me leave y’all with one more thing, you can surmise to what I am referring….(and you might be wrong!)

    Yuh can put a donkey in a stable, it dont make him a racehorse.

    From one online explanation:

    Hell in a handbasket:

    ”a big ole mess on the inside and out.

    take all of the underworld, the demons, the devil, the fires, the rivers of mud, the torture devises, etc and shove them into a picnic basket turning it inside and out into a conglomerated mess. Imagine what that looks like—-and that is what you are when you are hell in a handbasket. ”

  16. Just wait until the school children start dancing Gangnam style. We will have one more thing to ban. Even though Ban Ki Moon was “dancing” it at the U.N. today.

    Videos on U-Tube.

  17. It appears as though the youth have always been a bunch of wufless, good for nothing ragga-ragga muffins. SEE BELOW.

    The good old days, about 10,000 years ago were better. Then everybody died before age 30, so there were no miserable old people to annoy the youth, and interrupt their fun.

    “When I was young, we were taught to be discreet and respectful of elders, but the present youth are exceedingly disrespectful and impatient of restraint”.
    Hesiod, 8th century BC

    “What is happening to our young people? They disrespect their elders, they disobey their parents. They ignore the law. They riot in the streets inflamed with wild notions. Their morals are decaying. What is to become of them?”
    Plato, 4th Century BC

    “The young people of today think of nothing but themselves. They have no reverence for parents or old age. They are impatient of all restraint… As for the girls, they are forward, immodest and unladylike in speech, behavior and dress.”
    Attributed to Peter the Hermit, AD 1274

  18. St Leonards girls 1960′s

  19. Is this the same Mr. Farley who taught at Springer Memorial?
    I just wanted to know if it was the same person.

    In regards to the other matter about the girls and their hem:
    I would like to know if the teachers who sexually exploited the girls were sacked. Why were the victims asked to lower their hem?
    The uniform had nothing to do with the sick thoughts and deeds
    of the men. It is more likely that it was planned and not a spur of the moment thing because first they had to groom the children to accept their actions. No matter what the brain and reasoning of a child is not the same as an adult. Children can be molded and predators know it.

    You would think after Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean
    were exposed in a 2009 Unicef report for numerous acts of sexual abuse against children that Barbados would lead the way in creating laws to protect children from sexual exploitation and abuse. Why isn’t Barbados
    adopting policies the UN developed to protect the rights of children?

    When I attend Springer Memorial Mr. Farley was a kind and caring teacher. It saddens me to learn this has changed. Today, children are dealing with many violations to their dignity. Barbados has not done much to protect the rights of children at home, at school, and in the community, even after the United Nations Secretary-General’s World report on violence against children. I think the only way for children to be protected from men, and women who pursue sexual relationships with them, is for Barbadians to write to the United Nations to demand these rights, and for more citizens to reach out to the international media to expose the country’s nasty little secret.

    Barbados has much to be proud of except for its blatant refusal to protect children from sexual abuse, physical abuse, exploitation, disgusting parents, and repulsive teachers. There is no hotline on the island for students to gain REAL help. Barbados ignores these types of free services for children. Yet it does not have a problem asking for and gaining funds from international sources for youth development.

    In terms of the school suspensions, no one should have the power to do what Mr. Farley has done. Why not have a PTA and try to address those issues? Why not place a fine on the disgusting parents? Why would anyone cause children to deal with the humiliation of being sent home? What happens when they return to school and must deal with the stigma? What happens when they are at home unsupervised because their parents are at work. I think it is reckless to send them
    home. Surely an educated man could come up with a better set of options. It is a short cut to a complicated problem. We need leaders who do not take short cuts. We need leaders in our society who are willing to set aside tradition and ineffectual policies to focus on innovative ways of getting results. How innovative is sending a child home.
    It is a poor leadership strategy that reflects an enormous ego.
    More importantly it reflects a lack of genuine regard for the children.

    I am disappointed to learn Mr. Farley did this. I am disappointed in Barbados overall for ignoring the rights of children. Sometimes school is the only environment in which a child feels safe and this is true for the kids who are being abused at home. Barbados use to be a lot more compassionate. The U.S. is not a compassionate society but it does have a structure that permits ordinary people to create solutions because common sense is not the same as vast members of the alphabet behind your name.

    It kills me each time I read about a man having sex with a child.
    It kills me when I read about how children are being disempowered.
    Youth do not have a voice on the island. A teacher should be sacked if they enter that sacred space where a teacher breaches the trust of a child.

    Parents too need to follow the rules set up to make schools function properly. Parents need to be accountable for their children.
    Parents need to stand up for their children but too many of them
    are the problem. Give parents a fine for not doing the right thing.
    Give children the support and education they need to survive and thrive.

    When I went to Springer Memorial there was a teacher there by the name of Mr. Clarke, a sick man who was the only teacher at that school who punished me because I spoke softly. His punishment was to make me stand and clean the board while he sat and watched my behind.

    When my classmates complained about what he was doing because it was so blatant, and when I complained, no one did anything to stop it except one teacher. She spoke up. Individuals who use their power to hurt others should not be teaching and it would be nice if they really didn’t exist at all in the school system. However, we know that these types of men, and women who violate children go to great lengths to be in positions of power.

    The more respectable and powerful they appear watch out!

    If Mr, Farley is indeed trying to gain media attention I hope someone will have the integrity to correct him. He is not above the law. The problem is individuals with power in Barbados often behave like dictators in African nations. Barbadians need to take action, direct your energies towards the United Nations, submit your complaints to international organizations that can help small groups on the island gain justice.

    The problem with some Barbadians is you often behave as if Barbados is not a part of the world. You are a part of a global economy that means instead of using the internet to communicate nonsense of FB use it to advocate the injustices on the island. Don’t try to get the leaders to change, change the system. Set up a FB group to promote what is wrong in Barbados I assure you thousands if not millions of people will join you online and shame the disgusting policies this island uses to violate the rights of children.

    Thank you.

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