BoE fiscal policies: Too little, too late

[EDITOR’S NOTE: The following letter to the editor was signed by long-time members of the Fayette County Board of Education, Bob Todd and Marion Key. Key is running unopposed for reelection this year.]

During the Fayette County Board of Education meeting on June 18, the 2012-2013 budget passed by a vote of 3-2, with Marion Key and Bob Todd strongly opposed to the budget as presented.

We have had many community members ask us why we don’t support the budget; so we have outlined some of the key concerns in this letter.

Due to a significant financial crisis, the FCBOE is at a crucial point — a point where tough decisions must be made to ensure the fiscal viability of our education system.

Unfortunately, this year’s budget — for the second year in a row — pulls millions of dollars from the system’s financial reserves. This is akin to paying expected monthly household bills with savings intended for a rainy day.

The glaring question is, why is this being done for the second year?

The answer is that the new superintendent came on board in January of 2011 and proposed using $11 million of reserves with the understanding that a plan to cut expenses and reduce this use of reserves would be presented to the board in the fall. This never happened.

This current budget year calls for reserves of $15 million to be used to cover normal and expected expenses. These two budget cycles reduce our reserves from $26 million as of June 20, 2011 to a projected $800,000 on June 30, 2013.

The reality is that we are a year behind in our decision making — we should have made the tough decisions to cut more, close more, do more months ago.

The biggest cost savings can be realized by closing under-utilized schools.

The community understands this. In the 2011 community survey, the respondents preferred closing schools to cutting programs and services to students, but the board did not follow the community imperative. We are now reduced to fiscal crisis management.

The Fayette County Board of Education is a corporate body which is tasked with being a good steward of the resources entrusted to us by the community.

As such, individual board members are responsible for the financial well-being of the district.

Board members have the authority to accept, modify and or reject recommendations of the superintendent in financial matters. They may also submit alternate recommendations to the Board for consideration.

We do not feel that the administration’s last two years of budget preparation, planning, and oversight has allowed board members to fulfill their fiduciary responsibilities to the taxpayers of this county.

It also further weakens our ability to maintain a financially viable and quality school district.

In the coming weeks, we will be discussing a proposal by the Superintendent to close and consolidate schools for the 2013-2014 academic year. Again, unfortunately, the proposal is too little, too late and only results in $1.8 million in savings.

The Board has discussed other options including a more aggressive approach that would realize $4.8 million in savings which is still far short of where we need to be.

We are calling on our fellow board members, system employees, and community members to join us in aggressively advocating for immediate changes to realize savings for this year and deep, strategic cuts for next year that maximize student educational opportunities and make the most of our limited resources.

Our next board workshop to discuss these matters is Aug. 6.

Marion Key, Post 3

key.marion@fcboe.org

Bob Todd, Post 4

todd.bob@fcboe.org

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
Dr.Beardens "Vision"

Whenever some one mentions "vision" it smacks of Mr.Presberg and Bearden ... Not sure which started using it first. Since a few here have spoken of this vision please spell Dr.Bearden's "Vision" out for us.
As not one person in or out of the system I have spoken with, both supporters and or detractors ,
can seem to articulate it.

BrianAnderson
BrianAnderson's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/09/2009
re: Dr. Beardens Vision

Veritas,

I can't speak to his financial vision for the district, but have listened to him speak about academic issues facing not only Fayette, but all schools. I find his goals lofty, although Hence, the video I posted in my previous comment -

From my perspective, Dr. Bearden wants to transform the school district into one that leads the country in terms of 21st century learning. As I understand the 21st century learning concept, it's a movement away from the school models created in the industrial revolution for a factory economy, and towards a model that supports the technology driven global world we live in.

What does that mean? A movement away from simply working on the three R's by passively reading textbooks and towards more active research oriented learning where the teacher serves as a facilitator or coach in the learning process.

- Critical Thinking skills
- Problem Solving
- Strong oral and written communication
- Collaboration with classroom peers
- Agile learning and being able to adapt
- Access to information and actually analyzing that information

I've probably missed a few that we discussed, but these are the highlights.

As the teachers use technology and other methods to facilitate learning, students begin to learn regardless of subject at an accelerated rate. Students who typically go through the motions at school become engaged and participants in the learning process.

Think about it - if you work together in schools today, it's called cheating. If you work together at my company we call it collaborating.

More programs such as the 21st century technology initiatives being implemented at Booth and Whitewater this past year. Textbooks become one tool in the learning process, with internet resources, mobile applications, and collaborating with other students just as important.

Much of this was espoused in a book by Tony Wager, "The Global Achievement Gap". It's worth a read for those interested in the topic.

I admit I'm biased in favor of this change. I believe in this program. Others may not. In my experience in both large and small companies, and now more recently as an entrepreneur, these skill-sets bring real value in the workplace.

I have to believe that the existing Board also agreed with this, as they are the ones that selected Bearden over many others.

This begs the obvious question - how do we balance this change with the budgetary crisis? How to deliver a better education for all students? This is what I see Bearden and the BOE tasked with.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
Vision

Once again this is Not new and has been part of Fayette Counties educational model for years. He is not talking of anything that John Dewey and John Goodland and other innovators have been talking about for years. Group work and student collaboration have been part of the Fayette County model for years. Collaborating on Tests is frowned upon. The question is where is the data that shows Fayette has not been doing this. This issue is implementing the changes discussed. Does the vision include the assessment? If so where is the Data? The biggest concern is what is going to be done in order to preserve the financial integrity of the system?
PS Not only should we be concerned about the financial situation and the lack fiscal responsibility but now the fact that Bearden has no clue as to what is going on in Fayettte County Schools. To claim a vision of a model that Fayette county has been practicing/modeling for years..

Davids mom
Davids mom's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/30/2005
Fayette County/GA Core Curriculum - Anderson/Veritas

The state of Georgia - which has not been stellar in academic achievement - has joined other states in the last few years in developing a core curriculum to improve academic achievement. Even though Georgia has joined 46 other states in this endeavor - there are states whose core curriculum is better stated than the state of Georgia. (Compare for yourself)

This is Ga's core curriculum :

http://www.doe.k12.ga.us/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Curriculu...

Note the staff development that has been available to staff AND public this year. Fayette County must adhere to the GA Core Curriculum in their public school offerings. If you have visited in schools, you know that there are teachers and administrators who are implementing this curriculum and MORE to the students in Fayette County. Good teaching takes the best from many 'program's and adjusts the parts of that program that meet the needs of the student in the classroom. John Goodlad was considered innovative in the 60's. I haven't heard of John Goodland. (I'll look him up.) Good methods are basic - and good teachers and administrators use innovative ideas to implement good methods of teaching. Bearden has more than a 'clue' - and he knows how to inspire staff and community to work together. The life of a Supt. is considered 'long' if he lasts more than 2 years. It is a tough job, with many critics. Remember however, he is appointed by those who are elected.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
DM

Really .. Not sure where your going with the Ga Common Standards...?? Bearden's vision is Wagner's vision which is a direct encarnation of education philosophies from the past just as Dewey, "Goodlad". Nothing new point in fact Fayette Counties past and present educational model. His pointless jaunt to Virginia Beach Schools was a direct result of his reading Wagner's book and seeing that system mentioned and not researching. So, for Bearden to come in as if this is new shows his lack of awareness as to what Fayette County Schools have been doing. Yes ,in fact, CLUELESS. Inspiring staff ... Much of the staff of Fayette county has never been more demoralized than in the past two years. I speak to may teachers, custodians, maintenance personnel from top to bottom and I have come across few who Bearden has inspired.( other than those he panders). Now all of this is off track if he can't or doesn't manup and make the tough financial decisions all of this " vision" will be pointless. Please show me the innovation and financial leadership "vision" he has taken.

Just a little history on how far back this modeling in Fayette county goes ( reguardless of state curriculum)in case you forgot

1996 Sandy Creek was Designated an Apple distinguished school. Since it's so difficult to research and remember here is a to read about it.

http://www.edutopia.org/back-drawing-board

If you can't remember research way back to the late to mid 80's to see the beginning of Fayette Counties adaptation to the paradigm shift. But now do your research I'm tired of doing all the work for you.

Tuesday can't get here soon enought ....,;-)

Davids mom
Davids mom's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/30/2005
Veritas - I'm sorry

Oh Veritas, I apologize for my misunderstanding of your point in our discussion of Supt. Bearden. Please correct my thinking – I will share with you my ‘confusion’ and hopefully you will clarify.

You wrote:

Quote:

Fayette county has always modeled the "vision" of globalization , addressing the achievement gap , technology and practical application of technology etc in education as long as it has been around. Way back in 1996

I understood that you felt that Supt. Bearden was claiming he was bringing a ‘new vision’ to FC from the information that he gained at the WEPSA conference in Virginia Beach and that you felt that FC already was incorporating his ‘vision’ long before he arrived.

The WEPSA stated the following as their purpose:

Quote:

Wagner Education Policy Studies Association presents policy implications, funding impacts, and programmatic approaches to extending the day and expanding learning time in and outside of schools. As charter schools, after-school partnerships, and other models increasingly challenge the traditional school day, districts are becoming more innovative in their approaches to time.

You stated the following:

Quote:

Bearden's vision is Wagner's vision which is a direct encarnation of education philosophies from the past just as Dewey, "Goodlad". Nothing new point in fact Fayette Counties past and present educational model

I see a distinction between globalization , addressing the achievement gap , technology and practical application of technology and

policy implications, funding impacts, and programmatic approaches to extending the day and expanding learning time in and outside of schools

All districts are dealing with funding cuts and seeking ways to deliver an educational program to students in spite of the inevitable cuts in funding throughout public education. All educational leaders are analyzing policy implications, funding impacts and programmatic approaches to extending the day and expanding learning time in and outside of schools. Dewey and Goodlad, I think, would applaud them in looking at these issues which impact the delivery of education in 2012. True, there is nothing ‘new’ here - many urban districts have been dealing with this reality for over 30 years. But I think it may be ‘new’ for smaller districts like FC.

Thanks for your clarification. Have a nice day.

Davids mom
Davids mom's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/30/2005
Veritas - 1996?

IT'S 2012!! Apple has come a long way since 1996. iPads will replace some textbooks. Most schools that I have been in have 'white boards' and the technology that goes along with them. And in a few years - they will be obsolete!! It's difficult to keep up - but we have to - because our kids are operating 'smart phones' intelligently at 3 or 4 years old!! They are aware of too much information - and need teachers and technology that will help them analyze the overload of information that they are trying to process. The creative use of time is most important in delivering a competitive educational program.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
come on Dm

Dun ... that is the point I know your smarter than that..... The point that you obviously missed is that Fayette county has always modeled the "vision" of globalization , addressing the achievement gap , technology and practical application of technology etc in education as long as it has been around. Way back in 1996 and earlier ... Come on Mom FOCUS ..The discussion. Was Bearden,'s great new vision from the books and video he watched. This same ignorance sent him to Virgina Beach to see that we already out performed them. This is the "vision "that Bearden is supposedly bringing to Fayette ... It is here been here and grown and adapted to the "Paradigm shift in public education".He is so clueless as to what goes on in the school s that he believes he is bringing something to the system it did not model or practice. GEEEEZZ You can't be as clueless as he is ...can you!,

Bang,BANG !BANG !!!!!AAAARRRRRGGG!!!!
MY HEAD HURTS!!!

Davids mom
Davids mom's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/30/2005
Wagner Policy - Veritas
Quote:

Wagner Education Policy Studies Association presents policy implications, funding impacts, and programmatic approaches to extending the day and expanding learning time in and outside of schools. As charter schools, after-school partnerships, and other models increasingly challenge the traditional school day, districts are becoming more innovative in their approaches to time. States are also taking this up as legislation, and school leaders are negotiating how to meet student needs and balance costs and human resource challenges. Philanthropic organizations also play a powerful role in this nonprofit-public-policy dynamic, building the capacity of nonprofits to pursue innovative solutions and raising the bar for impact and results.

Any school leader who did not take advantage of this information should be considered clueless! With the talk of shortening the school year, lengthening the school day in order to continue to deliver a competitive educational program, I’m not sure if any members of any Board of Education would consider this information ‘worthless’. True, the information shared by Dewey and Goodlad has not changed and is still important today – but the delivery of this information in this economic climate is being challenged. I don’t know of too many teachers who don’t understand the importance of creative scheduling – but possibly they are the ones who received their credential based on a BA in an academic area – and have very little knowledge of what it takes to deliver their information to a group of students in a limited school day/year.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
DM

Mom you make my head hurt ..No one says don't take the advice or practice educational innovation. The point was it is not new.. These ideas have been floated around for decades in one form or another. We have been implementing and practicing these ideas here in FAYETTE FOR YEARS. A person is clueless when they run in and tout that they are bring in new philosophies when they are already in practice.

I usually reply to posts such as this by banging my head on the keyboard and hollering loudly!
CLUELESS AGAIN!

Davids mom
Davids mom's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/30/2005
Please keep me updated Veritas
Quote:

We have been implementing and practicing these ideas here in FAYETTE FOR YEARS.

What schools are implementing a 'shortened day program' throughout the year? What steps has the BOE in Fayette County taken to continue to practice these policies that have been around for years after drastic budget cuts? What will FC implement when, after letting teachers go, they will have to deliver a program to 30+ students without the aid of a paid paraprofessional?

I'm sure Supt. Bearden was pleased to share the innovative use of time as found in Fayette County when FC experienced the drastic cuts in delivery services that so many urban districts experienced over the past 20 years. (One reason we purchased property here is because the school system had a record meeting the needs of all of their students with the support of an enlightened parent volunteer group; dedicated teachers and administrators; community support; low crime involving schools and/or students. ) IN ORDER TO PRACTICE EDUCATIONAL INNOVATION AFTER BUDGET CUTS - ONE MUST ANALYZE THE BEST USE OF TIME!

Thanks for the update.

Davids mom
Davids mom's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/30/2005
Veritas

Take an aspirin - then look up the difference between TIME and TECHNOLOGY Dewey and Goodlad did not have the challenges that our school districts are facing today. There is nothing new under the sun, but sharing ideas with today's educational leaders as to how to meet the current challenges in delivering a competitive education is crucial to maintaining what you seem to be so very proud of. I have seen some of the innovative schedules that many of the administrators are using in FC. There are also policies that can involve community resources, etc. in delivering the same or improved educational actvities within a cut of time spent with teacher directed lessons. Only an insecure individual thinks they know everything - or wants others to think so. Dr. Bearden does not appear to be insecure, especially after receiving a 5-0 vote from the BOE.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
DM OH MY GAWD

I obviously gave you WAAAY to much Credit. You definitely have a reading comprehension issue. I never said anything about not sharing ideas. Nobody said anything was wrong With Wagner's ideas. The innovation you speak of in Fayette (ie scheduling, policy and community involvement) has been going on LOOOONNNNGGGG before Bearden. THAT MY DEAR IS THE POINT. These are not new ideas or philosophies to Fayette county. But, the pictures is whether you get it or not if Bearden Does not get wise and consider every available option there will not be any money to continue to maintain the quality sytem we have.. It is obviously too far over you head. Not to be rude but I'm tired of talking to you.
YOU ARE CLUELESS!!

So by using your logic and comprehension skills
"maintaining what you seem to be so very proud of. "
Are you saying your not proud of Fayette counties schools , students and Teachers

Davids mom
Davids mom's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/30/2005
LOL Veritas

Have a nice evening. You are one of the more enlightened ones on this blog. Sorry you don't have confidence in Dr. Bearden. Very few Superintendents get a 5-0 vote of support. As of now, the parents and the Board do have confidence. Re-read the Wagner Associations policy. Maybe you are referring to another organization.

Quote:

Dun ... that is the point I know your smarter than that..... The point that you obviously missed is that Fayette county has always modeled the "vision" of globalization , addressing the achievement gap , technology and practical application of technology etc in education as long as it has been around. Way back in 1996 and earlier ... Come on Mom FOCUS ..The discussion. Was Bearden,'s great new vision from the books and video he watched. This same ignorance sent him to Virgina Beach to see that we already out performed them. This is the "vision "that Bearden is supposedly bringing to Fayette ... It is here been here and grown and adapted to the "Paradigm shift in public education".He is so clueless as to what goes on in the school s that he believes he is bringing something to the system it did not model or practice. GEEEEZZ You can't be as clueless as he is ...can you!,

Things have changed since 1996, but FC has kept up. This is a new challenge for all school leaders - very few districts have the programs to meet the unique challenges of today's economy. Thank heavens you and your calm demeanor are not on the BOE!

Take another aspirin. Night!

MajorMike
MajorMike's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/20/2005
Veritas - be calm

Buh .. buh .. but, DM was a schoolteacher!!! In the enlightened state of California no less.

BTW: I really, really, really enjoyed your blog contribution on the second amendment with historical perspective. After reading it, a couple of quotes from Isoroku Yamamoto came to mind.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
major mike

Calm yes, but utterely frustrated when one who claims to be educated and or an educator lacks the common reasoning capability to stay on point. I've never had the experience of dealing with an individual so weak in the skills of debate and comprehension that they conjure up some ficticious subject which was never the point of contention, or be so dead set on proving anything as to try and ascribe to ideas never stated,insinuated or even hinted at.
I do understand now from being a bystander in blogs she participated why so many have repeated "stay on point" or "provide facts" to her, as she obvious has great difficulty following a stream of thought.

Thanks and glad you enjoyed my thoughts on the second amendment debate.

"invincibility lies in the defense,the possibility of victory in the attack"
SUN TZU

MajorMike
MajorMike's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/20/2005
Veritas - SUN TZU

Ah yes - The Art of War - the interwoven planks. Back at you with "fixed fortifications are a monument to the stupidity of mankind" - GP on the Westwall.

DM's style can best be summed up as a "buh, buh, but Bush lied!" in losing arguments. It's sort of a "watch my right hand" strategy. She also is a firm believer that having the last post is the same as having the final say.

I agree with you that teachers and other professionals are the most valuable asset of our school system. So naturally that is where the short sighted dimwits want to cut first. The Soviets used to say that you pay your police/soldiers and teachers well because the first protects the present and the second protects the future.

Have you considered the possibility that Bearden's lack of creativity may be mandated?

americanpatriots
americanpatriots's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/05/2010
In response to Hollowell's email to me yesterday

My entire family has already voted and we did not vote for you! Furthermore, I heartily agree with EVERYTHING Cal Beverly said in his article about you.

While I find you a very affable well-spoken individual, I don’t think you are qualified for a seat on the Board of Education.

You have repeatedly grossly overstated your financial background and are so closely aligned to Janet Smola, Terri Smith, Leonard Presberg, and Jeff Bearden, that I find it hard to figure out where you would stand on critical financial and operational issues facing the sinking ship called the Fayette County Board of Education.

Bearden will be in a tough fight to keep his job after a new board is seated next year. In my opinion, he should have been shown the door some time ago for his total lack of leadership and inability to deal with the financial nightmare that he has helped to bring about under his watch.

I will work tirelessly to ensure that Terri Smith is defeated in her re-election effort later this year. She and Janet Smola have made so many terrible decisions that have brought the school system to the brink of financial ruin.

On another subject, but one that we should not forget, Smola talked about her vast financial knowledge and experience when she ran for election some time ago. As we later learned, her education and financial experience were extremely limited. Furthermore, she has since clearly demonstrated that she doesn’t have a clue about finance or operational matters and, I for one, am delighted to see her go.

I can understand your desire to sit on the BoE but I really believe your opponent Dr. Barry Marchman along with Dr. Mary Kay Bacallao have the necessary qualifications the citizens of Fayette County desperately need to help Dr. Bob Todd and Marion Key get us out of the financial mess that Smith, Smola, Bearden, and, to a lesser degree only because he is relatively new, Presberg, have put the school board in.

The unbelievably bad financial forecasting and budgets prepared by the CFO, Laura Brock, have played a major role in bringing the school system to the edge of financial collapse. For Bearden, Smola, Smith and Presberg to sit there as if brain-dead and accept her incompetence is shocking to say the least.

Jim Richter

BrianAnderson
BrianAnderson's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/09/2009
Americanpatriots

Jim,

Interesting that more people don't get to this point you brought up:

Quote:

can understand your desire to sit on the BoE but I really believe your opponent Dr. Barry Marchman along with Dr. Mary Kay Bacallao have the necessary qualifications the citizens of Fayette County desperately need to help Dr. Bob Todd and Marion Key get us out of the financial mess that Smith, Smola, Bearden, and, to a lesser degree only because he is relatively new, Presberg, have put the school board in.

The unbelievably bad financial forecasting and budgets prepared by the CFO, Laura Brock, have played a major role in bringing the school system to the edge of financial collapse. For Bearden, Smola, Smith and Presberg to sit there as if brain-dead and accept her incompetence is shocking to say the least.

Jim Richter

While I don't know the CFO, she is the school system member tasked with financial forecasting and budgets. While she didn't cause the current situation, she obviously hasn't come up with a strategy to move beyond where we are. You mention Bearden, Smola, Smith and Presberg -- have Todd / Key tried to not renew her contract?

americanpatriots
americanpatriots's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/05/2010
Explanation for Dr Todd's and Marion Key's vote

Obviously, you never read Bearden’s contract.

If you had bothered to request a copy of Bearden’s contract, as permitted by the Ga Open Records Act, you would have learned that he can be terminated at any time without notice for cause and without it costing the taxpayers a dime. After I read the contract, I understood why Dr. Todd and Marion Key voted to extend his contract. Incidentally, he did not get a three-year extension. Again, had you read his contract, you would have learned the truth.

In my view, Bearden was an absolutely bad mistake but I have to admit that I supported the BoE’s choice. Sometimes you are right and sometimes you are wrong.

Bearden knew that a new elected board would never tolerate his TOTAL LACK OF LEADERSHIP, so he got his “go along to get along” pals, Presburg, Smith and Smola, to extend his contract. As you know, it only takes 3 out of 5 to pass anything you want.

Hopefully we will see the end of Smith’s incredibly awful tract record on the board soon and thankfully her soul mate Smola, who knew she couldn’t possibly win a new term, is headed for the door in January. And, If Bearden continues to lead like he has thus far, he will be introduced to the unemployment line soon.

Jim Richter

Davids mom
Davids mom's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/30/2005
Supt. Bearden

I attended several honor and graduation events in Fayette County before the closing of school. Supt. Bearden spoke at most of them - and he received almost a standing ovation from the parents. Interesting. Some here may not think highly of him, but the parents (the voters) seemed to appreciate his efforts this year. Board members should be careful in 'replacing' him. . board members are the ones who are elected - right?

BrianAnderson
BrianAnderson's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/09/2009
re: Supt. Bearden

Hi David's mom,

I completely agree with you. I've met him several times and find him to be a strong leader. On two occasions, I was in a group with a few dozen parents and all of them were extremely supportive of him. To me as a parent, he is in touch with both the current state of education, the shortcomings, and has a vision to fix this.

It's leadership like this that made me feel good about not pulling my kids to put them in private schools.

He shared this video at one meeting - I think many would enjoy it:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDZFcDGpL4U

If that doesn't net out the challenge facing education, I don't know what does.

As for the sharp comments from many over the financial situation we are in, I admit I don't have the answers. While I'm sure people who have ties to one BOE member or another can quote lots of comments or votes in previous meetings, most taxpayers are like myself and only know the Superintendent or simply the Principal/Asst. Principals at their respective schools. 99% of the tax payers don't go to every board meeting. For all the bloggers who are partisan to certain candidates, that's an important point to note.

Many taxpayers who are parents and educators support Dr. Bearden. He is well-liked and respected by parents and educators.

Many of the reasons for our current financial challenges predate him by almost a decade! The only person/persons that I see who have been involved with our school system throughout the entire decline are members of the board! And these members span both sides of the apparent factions that exist - so there is no political malice in this statement.

Whether you prefer the apparent pair of Key/Todd, or find yourselves supporting Smith/Presberg/Smola, we as tax payers deserve active solutions to help right the financial ship from both our BOE leadership AND the Superintendent.

AtHomeGym
AtHomeGym's picture
Online
Joined: 01/18/2007
Brian Anderson & Video

Thanks for linking us to an "unavailable" video!

BrianAnderson
BrianAnderson's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/09/2009
re: AtHomegym ..You can find the video at RSA

LOL - it didn't work for you!?

Sorry!

Here are two links that both work on my end. If not, try the search that Veritas suggested.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDZFcDGpL4U

or

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nKu0y-x9ijc

Davids mom
Davids mom's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/30/2005
The Video

Teachers who have been allowed to collaborate with one another have found these ideas presented in the video helpful. There are programs within Fayette County where teachers and parents 'team' in order to meet the needs of students in the classroom. I have witnessed many. What does this have to do with the financial situation in Fayette County? Teachers, parents, and community need to be aware of the reality; collaborate on what they can do within the confines of the reality - and move forward with CREATIVE thinking - thinking out of the box. Instead of rehashing what was - we need to be working on what do we do now for our kids! Everything in Fayette County has not gone to hell. With the previous cuts in financés in this district - there still have been some exciting programs going on in Fayette County classrooms. The bottom line of any educational system is the effectiveness of the delivery system. When the operations in the Board of Education meetings affect the delivery of a good education - then changes should be made. It doesn't seem as if the Board, who voted 5-0 to continue with Supt. Bearden are non-supportive of his efforts so far. The rest of this 'stuff' is political - and not very helpful as our staff and students prepare to start a new school year. Attend the Board of Education meetings, visit your neighborhood school, volunteer if possible. Get involved - then work with those involved to change what needs to be changed. The needs of our students and staff will continue even after July 31. Fayette County is not the only school district facing a financial shortfall in the United States!! Grants are available for creative approaches to education. Is there a grant writer in the district? The Supt. has to make sure that staff and students are safe within clean schools; can access schools (transportation); have well-trained adults operating all aspects of the school plant; serve nutritious meals; etc., etc., etc. within a BUDGET. Public education is tied to property taxes - and the property taxes in Fayette County aren't what they used to be. Simplistic, but the truth. There are very divergent ideas represented in this discussion - but I think that everyone wants what is best for the future of our kids. Our kids are not faced with the same 'world' that was there 20-50 years ago. The video handled this reality quite well. Thanks for sharing.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
AtHomegym ..You can find the video at RSA

You can find the video at RSA or www.sirkenribinson.com or www.thersa.org I saw it 2 or 3 years ago along with many of Sir Ken Robinson's talks ....they are informative reiterations and reincarnations of previous discussions on the topic of changes in public education ... I'm not sure as to quite what any of this has to do with what the fiscal and financial issues ,past and present , here in Fayette county. But it goes to what I stated earlier Bearden has watched or read such material and runs out and tells the staff to read and watch them without himself truly understanding them.

BrianAnderson
BrianAnderson's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/09/2009
re: AtHomegym ..You can find the video at RSA

It has nothing to do with the financial/fiscal issues, unless you ask the question...

"Given the stated goal of moving towards a 21st century education model, and taking into account our current financial issues, how do we get there?"

The reason I shared it was in response to David's Moms comment. I found it quite informative and useful personally, and I know that everyone in the focus group I sat in found it interesting.

Your comment at the end of your post confuses me...

Quote:

But it goes to what I stated earlier Bearden has watched or read such material and runs out and tells the staff to read and watch them without himself truly understanding them.

With what do you base that on? Are you saying that Bearden simply heard about this new learning model, thought it was cool, and then told everyone to go check it out?

I get it - you obviously don't like him, find him lacking in fiscal expertise. I do like him. It's up to the board and voters to decide.

Didn't Bearden and several leaders from the system plus Chick Fil Et execs take a trip to Norfolk, VA to check out a system that was already down the road implementing the model. It seems to me that we are taking action in evaluating and moving towards that model. Additionally, last Aug. Bearden implemented a community focus group to share the idea with representatives from each school in the district. Disclosure - I was a member of this group.

Moving the school system forward academically is a major part of his job description! As I said in my earlier post, it's up to the BOE and Bearden to figure out how to pay for it all.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
My post Mr.Anderson

Yes that is what I'm saying..and No it is not a "New Model" it has been around in one for or another for 10 yrs at least. He read about Virginia Beach Schools in a book then chick fil a flew Bearden and some other administrators to that system. Guess what his report was ? There is no comparison to Fayette county schools as Fayette county model, programs and scores are ahead of Virginia Beach. He could have done this research online in 10 minutes and discovered this. If you actually attended a meeting or two or even a podcast you would have known this. Mr.Anderson I suggest you do your research.

BrianAnderson
BrianAnderson's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/09/2009
re: My post Mr.Anderson (Veritas)

Veritas,

Thanks for the advice.

I commend the fact you are very well versed in the BOE history going back to the 90's, attend most of the BOE meetings, and can do your own research. You are probably quite aware that most voters will NEVER do half of what you've done.

On my end - I've attended a few meetings, volunteered to serve on a community technology council, am active in my schools, and am quite adept at research. With my family and work commitments, this is all I can afford to do.

We both do our part.

My point is simple - he has a stated vision, many (but not all) voters like it and he's following through on it. I'm sure he did research on the simple test score and program differentials between the two. I think the value in the trip was looking at how this "new" model is implemented in the real world, rather than simply scanning a few articles. I'm not 100% on this one, but I think we were lucky enough to have Chick Fil Et foot part of the cost.

You don't like him. That's completely fine. Continue your efforts to get rid of him. Get your choice for board members reelected. But don't forget, there will always be two sides to every important issue. Many disagree with your opinion of Bearden and the right direction for our system.

But, do you not think that this specific vision is a large part of the reason he was selected by our current BOE over other candidates?

Regardless of which BOE candidate(s) you support, and I understand from your previous comments you specifically back Todd/Key, - the entire Board chose him based on this vision. They didn't pick him because he was financial expert in turning around school systems.

Maybe they should have?

AtHomeGym
AtHomeGym's picture
Online
Joined: 01/18/2007
Brian Anderson & "end of post"

Nope, not me--not my post.

Davids mom
Davids mom's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/30/2005
Brian Anderson

Fayette County educational leaders are not the only leaders in our country who were caught making decisions ( some proved to be detrimental) based on a very unstable economy. Throughout our country there are unfinished housing developments and empty classrooms. Supt. Bearden, the staff and volunteers at Fayette County schools are united in implementing a core curriculum that will maintain AND improve the educational offerings for our students. Fayette County parents are meaningfully involved in the educational program. Good teachers will continue to be attracted to Fayette County. Let's hope that some of the negativity and back biting does not affect adversely the elected adults and those hired to work for the educational program from performing their duties for the benefit of our students. One learns from past mistakes. I hope all parents will make informed decisions regarding this election.

Quote:

Let's put it this way: the BOE just extended Bearden by a 5-0 vote.

Yup!

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
And believe me Mr Anderson

"99% don't attend all" See there is your issue.. On an important note..No one expects anyone to attend all the meetings but maybe attend a few important ones. If you were really concerned you would have made some attempt to keep informed as to what has been occuring. In one respect you are correct most people didn't bother to trouble themselves to keep a finger on the pulse of the system.Now low and behold you are worried and informed yourself just enough to be dangerous. Believe me Mr Anderson there are Many educators, system emplyees , parents and Tax payers that find Dr.Bearden inept. Yes , this fiscal mess started before Dr.Bearden and his Lack of vision and inability to make tough decisions in order to protect a few are exacerbating the situation. Bearden read a few feel good books in his online doctoral program and spouts back philosophical touchy feely philsosphy that he himself still does not understand. This is the reason behind his push for an early extension ... Because he knew his time might be up under new board leadership.

PS he also wanted a raise until the board put an end to that by stipulating he could get a raise when all the teachers could also.( should have stated when all the employees not just teachers).

patkebb
patkebb's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/22/2012
Todd and Key trouble me

You stated the following:

"If you had bothered to request a copy of Bearden’s contract, as permitted by the Ga Open Records Act, you would have learned that he can be terminated at any time without notice for cause and without it costing the taxpayers a dime."

Please post a copy of the superintendent contract for us to read. It absolutely cannot state specifically what you have written. No superintendent in this state would sign such a document. There have to be a dozen "wheres" and "wherefores" describing termination for "cause."

So, again, post the contract for us to see.

Yeah, Bearden can be fired. But, the taxpayers will be paying the remaing portion of his contract (which the board just extended).

I usually agree with americanpartriots writes, but I think he is misinformed here. I will retract that statement if he posts the contract and it says what what he has written.

NUK_1
NUK_1's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/17/2007
The "for cause" clause

"For cause" is always open to interpretation unless it is something VERY blatant or obviously illegal. Lawyers have a field day with these kind of employment contracts.

Let's put it this way: the BOE just extended Bearden by a 5-0 vote. If in January or whenever they decide they have "cause" to fire him because they don't like his proposals, his attorney is immediately going to bring up the FACT that the BOE unanimously extended his contract months prior. Yeah, good luck winning that lawsuit without settling for almost all of his remaining money due if you fire him then.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
cause

Just cause for termination could be considered for example.. when the board requested a budget with cuts in the fall that Bearden did not supply would be a terminable cause. ( he has already done this once)If an individual does not fill the contractual duties as stated in the contract the contract can then be terminated. It is not so difficult as it occurs quite frequently now days. In so as far as "no person would sign such a document" every teacher in Fayette County did.

patkebb
patkebb's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/22/2012
Still troubled by Todd and Key

Nuk_1 is absolutely right. Veritas, you and I usually agree, but not this time.

Superintendent contracts are lengthy and filled with as many conditions as that of a college football coach. Yes, Bearden can be fired, but the taxpayers will be paying a huge sum of money (particularly since all 5 board members just voted to extend his contract) for the remaining portion of his contract.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
Patkebb

True I too frequently find agreement with your positions but everyone can't see eye to eye all the time :-) If a superintendent contract is terminated because of not following contractual obligations or board directives he is not entitled to the remaining pay on his contract. That is Contract Law 101

suggarfoot
suggarfoot's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/10/2007
the 3 amingos have ruined us

For years it was Smith, Smola, and Wright. For a brief time we had Dr Tolbert and things were getting better. Now we have Presberg and the choke holt continues.

WE HAVE GOT TO ELECT SOMEONE WITH THE SENSE AND GUTS TO MAKE THE CALLS THAT WILL PULL US OUT OF THIS, IF WE CAN BE PULLED OUT AT ALL.

Most of our problems come from the reckless spending for schools along the West Fayette Bypass for developers. That fact is unescapable. Ms Smith and Smola would like for you to forget that.

Marion Key is right, too little, too late. I suspect they controlled the vote and hoped to put the decisions off to help Smith get re elected. I assume they feel by calling attention to the mess they made, her chances of re election are hopeless.

What is puzzling to me now is why they want to stay in office? They can't fix the problem, or they would have. In my eyes, they ARE they problem. They have gutted the school system. There is not another dollar to throw at the feet of a developer.

They have created such a mess, if we are lucky enough to get someone competent elected, we will still be trying to dig out of at a hole the size of the grand canyon. It is going to take years to get out of this.

I still go back to the same question, what do they hope to gain by holding on to the power?

BrianAnderson
BrianAnderson's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/09/2009
suggarfoot

Just a question - but how long has each of the BOE been in office? I realize Mr. Presberg is new, but in general, haven't the others been around for years?

I may be wrong, but I think I voted for Todd and Key when I first moved to Fayette county in the early 2000's.

Is it your premise that the Smith/Smola/Presberg are "bad" or "incompetent", and Key/Todd are the solution but simply outvoted by the others?

Let's not forget that the financial woes facing our district are a decade old and that our previous Superintendent probably got out at a good time with a sterling reputation.

suggarfoot
suggarfoot's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/10/2007
yes

"Is it your premise that the Smith/Smola/Presberg are "bad" or "incompetent", and Key/Todd are the solution but simply outvoted by the others? "

Dr Todd was on the school board years ago and got off. (I think it was Woody somebody that took his place, Smola could tell you his name) Marion has stayed. She voted against Rivers. She was against the hundreds of acers of land the BOE bought. During the time of the building of the schools along the soon to be built bypass, I watched in disgust, and as Nuk can tell you, I was very vocal against it.

My main point in it was, WAIT. WAIT, till you have something to justify the building. WAIT, till the developers have built, or at least till they broke ground. WAIT, till the developers buyers have bought, so they can share the cost of building these schools. These schools were built with our tax money as developers tools to sell their new houses. It was a horrible gamble. "build it and they will come". Well, the developers wife, Smith, and the uneducated blow hard, Smola, built it...and they didn't show up.

In some other places (Coweta) the developers donate the land. It has been the custom here to buy 100 acre tracks, build the school, and sell the excess to the developers. This, for many reasons, has been a bad plan. The most logical flaw in this is, if you buy excess land and sell it to the developers...would not the kids in the new houses fill up the schools? (yes) and we therefore, did nothing to help our own kids, but rather used our tax dollars to build schools for kids that weren't even here?

The whole scheme was insane and now we have almost 200 acres of land and Rivers is in the middle on no where. The parents of Fayeteville don't want their iddy biddy ones on a buss that far, nor do the parents of Tyrone. Rivers was built to hold over 600 kids. It holds about 30 special ed as we speak. The cost I was told by someone on the board, a few years ago, to keep it maintained is about $250,000. a year. I can remember just a few years ago, we had to fight the BOE to keep them from putting in artifical turf and swimming pools at each of the schools cause someone on the board had a kid that swims.

soundofm
soundofm's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/27/2009
Can Key and Todd be trusted?

See below.

soundofm
soundofm's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/27/2009
Why did Key and Todd approve extending Bearden's contract?

Much of what is written here makes sense. But, I am confused. Why did Key and Todd BOTH vote to extend the superintendent's contract for an additional 3 years? This newspaper reported that 5-0 vote on June 19th. If Key and Todd believe what they write in the letter above, why didn't they speak out against the superintendent's leadership and vote against his contract renewal?

Furthermore, Key and Todd both have supported cuts to employee pay and benefits. Why aren't they promoting cuts to some of the needless programs and unnecessary positions that plague the school system? Want to know what these are - just ask almost any employee.

Key and Todd are right. Schools have to be closed. It will be interesting to see if they will really vote to do so. So far, their chief approach has just been to save money by taking it from the employee's wallets.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
NUK and soundofm

Actually, if you had been keeping up to date both Todd and Key have promoted cuts in excess positions and programs since 2005 but Wright ,Smith and Smola voted on Decotis's proposals in the past. ( history of 3-2 votes)They have offered various ideas to the current admin and board to the same result. I really wish that when people decide to start jumping in that they would get facts straight and should have been paying attention the whole time this mess began to surface. Todd himself started the alarm before 2005 in that if some precautions and changes were not implemented soon he warned of the financial crisis on the horizon and that the system needed to focus on our financial future. Smith, Smola and Wright along with Neil Sullivan all jumped up and down about how Dr.Todd didn't know what he was talking about and that Fayette was the model of fiscal success and financially sound.He warned again in 2008 to the same out cry and result. Go back and check the record.

BrianAnderson
BrianAnderson's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/09/2009
Veritas

Thanks for the details on past history here.

Did Decotis propose any financial adjustments to policy to stave off the pending financial crisis? Just curious what he may done or proposed differently from Dr. Bearden.

Politics and historical votes aside - this is a situation that has to be corrected immediately. Whether the answer is closing multiple schools (3, 4, 5 or even more), raising more money - I don't know. I'm just curious what solutions have been proposed previously by any BOE member or Dr. Decotis that could have stopped this. And - do these proposals still have merit today?

Thanks again for your comments.

suggarfoot
suggarfoot's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/10/2007
that is true

I remember Dr Todd was so disgusted, he had decided not to run for re election. Then Dr Tolbert stepped forward and there was hope of pulling us ot of this. Todd stayed on to may a difference. For a short while, that did happen. But when you are sitting there with a loud mouth who wants to constantly control the conversation, it is very hard. I can remember some very strong comments that were passed at the meetings between Smola and Dr Todd.

When Dr Todd ran last time, I remember hearing him speak. He stated quite plainly that the overbuilding had put us in a position it will takes years to change. "And the band played on"

NUK_1
NUK_1's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/17/2007
Veritas: I've been paying attention long before then

I don't think Todd and Key are the problem, but I've never been convinced they were part of of the solution either. For a while they have been the only 2 opposed to SOME of the Smith/Smola+alternating goofs, but they aren't blameless by any means.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
Nuk

I agree , somewhat. But I seriously doubt you have attended many if any Board meetings. I have been following FCBOE ups and downs since the days of Jerry Stinchcomb.

NUK_1
NUK_1's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/17/2007
Key and Todd talk tougher than they vote

Extending "kick the can down the road another year" Bearden was a huge mistake, one that both Key and Todd voted for doing. They both have a history of being rather cantankerous in the media and then being sort of pushovers when the rubber hits the road. Obviously they NOW say that some(or a lot) of cuts should have been made already(duh!), but they went ahead and voted to extend the guy most responsible for simply putting it off for another year. FAIL.

While the incompetence of the BOE Finance Dir can at least be "credited" for causing Bearden some problems in devising a strategic plan to deal with the utter financial disaster or not being 100% aware, he should have known coming into the job that it was going to require some painful decisions right away. He passed on that and all 5 board members let him and rewarded him with a contract extension for kicking that can down the road a little further.

soundofm
soundofm's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/27/2009
Can't trust Todd and Key

I think NUK_1 has assessed the situation well. Todd and Key talk BIG, but do little (except rob the employees of the school district).

Americanpatriots is totally wrong. We are supposed to believe that Todd and Key voted to extend the superintendent's contract (which was one and one-half years away from expiring) so they could fire him later? Nonsense. Why didn't Todd and Key at least call for a postponement of the vote? Why didn't they publicly state what they have written in this letter?

The superintendent NOW has a contract until June 2015. Anyone who believes that ending that contract "for cause" means you can fire him because you don't like the way he handles his job, is extremely ill-formed. If you have followed school board politics in this state, you would clearly know that is not true. "For cause" has a very, very narrow definition. Dr. Bearden may not be brilliant, but he is not stupid enough to jeopadize his job. In fact, it appears he clearly outwitted Todd and Key by securing it until June 2015.

wildcat
wildcat's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/12/2006
@ soundofm re: boe

The vote for superintendent had to be unanimous. Two of the five had to compromise for that to happen. The issue to extend his contract was a stall tactic to distract the public from the real issues. Since he can be terminated, why not just extend the contract (give the 3 amigos what they want)and continue to focus on the real issue? That is what happened..... stall tactic DENIED.

Also, all the school closing stuff (pitting communities against each other) is just another distraction from the real issues. If you would take the time to talk to teachers (and parents) at Hood and FI, you would find that most you speak to actually WANT to move to the new school.

soundofm
soundofm's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/27/2009
Todd and Key are part of the problem

NO, the vote to extend the superintendent's contract did NOT have to be unanimous. It is certainly not always unanimous in other school districts. NO, the superintendent cannot just be terminated.

And IF the superintendent's contract had to be unanimous, then all the more reason for Key and Todd to vote against it. They could have defended such a vote by stating what they have stated in this letter. But, as NUK_1 has stated, these 2 board members don't vote the way they talk.

Make no mistake, I don't like Smith, Smola, and Presberg. But I am saying that Key and Todd are a big problem also.

Wildcat, I usually agree with you, but we have to part ways on this one. The school board needs 5 new board members.

wildcat
wildcat's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/12/2006
@ soundofm

You are right. It is majority rules for both hiring and extending. I just made a call to ask why they voted the way they did. This is what I was told:
They did not want the focus to be on Beardon's contract but to be on the budget. They know that he can be fired (majority rule) with due cause (balanced budget).

patkebb
patkebb's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/22/2012
Todd and Key baffle me

I agree that Todd and Key are a part of the problem. I don't like the other 3 board members either, but I am amazed at how little Todd and Key do (besides talk).

Not only did Todd and Key vote to extend the superintendent's contract, but year after year they have voted to renew the contracts of other incompetent school personnel. The Deputy Superintendent, the Bus Director, the Comptroller, the Assistant Superintendent (and others) - Todd and Key have never voted against extending the contact of any of these people. We would all be better off with new people in those positions.

Then, just a few weeks ago I read where Todd and Key supported keeping full time assistant principals at the two smallest elementary schools. A sensible cost saving measure had been introduced to cut the assistant principal positions in those schools to part time (because of low enrollment). Key and Todd (and the other 3 board members) cost the taxpayers over $100,000 (cost of the salary and benefits of adding another half time position at each school) by refusing to support that proposal.

There has been much mention of the 3 amigos on this blog (first, they were Smith, Smola, and Wright and now Smith, Smola, and Presberg). The problem isn't JUST the 3 amigos, it is the 3 amigos (Smith, Smola, Presberg) and the 2 amigos (Todd and Key). The 2 groups may hate each other, but it would be a great improvement if all 5 were gone. And IF they would take the superintendent with them (the one that Smith, Smola, Key, and Todd have TWICE approved a contract for), the situation would improve even more. Maybe we could have a silly string parade as all 6 exit.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
patkebb

"Then, just a few weeks ago I read where Todd and Key supported keeping full time assistant principals at the two smallest elementary schools." Boy, you people can't read or just blindly run in without checking. Todd voted AGAINST making those positions full-time. Also, they both wanted to eliminate some of those NON state funded AP positions and Bearden ,Smith, Smola and Presberg did not even want to consider looking at those positions. (Hollowell stated the same in a resent forum). I hope you are aware that the board can only vote on the superintendent's recommendation as far as employment (teachers, principals Assistant Principals, Assistant Superintendent's) not the individuals.The only position in which they ( the board) have that power over is the Superindent's.

patkebb
patkebb's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/22/2012
Todd and Key just talk

Actually, the board must approve every person hired in the Fayette School system. Commonly, a list (with names of individuals) is publicly presented to the board. BUT, a board member can ask to vote on individuals separately (i.e., rather than as part of a list).

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
PatKebb

Actually..The board or a single board member CANNOT FIRE ANYONE WITHOUT THE SUPERINTENDENTS RECOMMENDATION. The responsibility of recommending the hiring and/or firing lies with the superintendent . The board can only act on the superindent's recommendation.

patkebb
patkebb's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/22/2012
Todd and Key need to act or resign

I think YOU are missing the point. No, the board cannot fire employees; BUT they do vote on hiring EVERY one of them. When is the last time Todd and Key voted against the contract of those that they know are incompetent (they didn't even vote against the superintendent last month)?

My point is, as several others have also argued, their votes don't match their talk. They complain, but don't do nearly as much as they should and could do rectify the situation. There has been much talk on the blogs about 3-2 votes, the truth is there have been plenty of 5-0 votes that were clearly wrong.

AtHomeGym
AtHomeGym's picture
Online
Joined: 01/18/2007
Todd & Key votes

Just for example, the unanimous vote to select Presberg as the 5th member of the BOE--I remain amazed at how they all could ignore the outstanding qualifications of Bonnie Willis,which would not only have properly honored an outstanding volunteer candidate but absolutely neutered that NAACP lawsuit.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
AtHomeGym

Hindsight is 20/20. I agree poor choice and laps of due diligence. But when the appointment came most everyone even the public was praising the choice (albeit based on padded and insinuated experience and resume)..
http://www.thecitizennews.com/articles/11-15-2011/fayette-boe-appoints-p...

I too personally wish Bonnie Willis would have been the choice.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
Pat you missed completely

True the board member could randomly pull a name off the recommended hire list and vote No. But here is where your logic fails. From whom does the performance evaluation of the employee come... That's right the Superintendent..(or via principal if it is a teacher/school staff). Now if a board member acted independently from the superintendents hiring recommendation ...would you open yourself up to the litigation. Could you justify your decision in court? That is what happened with Clayton county. Now other than this boneheaded decision on Bearden's contract the vast majority of the important and controversial votes have been 3-2 the 5-0 votes you refer have been on mundane day to day clerical votes... Have you actually attended any Board meetings? I have and when I haven't I have kept up from meeting minutes until podcast .. Which I Do listen to.

But again we can't always see eye to eye ;-)

NUK_1
NUK_1's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/17/2007
patkebb: Completely agree

Key couldn't even bother to show up for a vote on the school budget a few years ago and also thinks she can walk into any of our schools at any time and start telling everyone what to do. Not the biggest problem on the BOE, but not the solution either.

Liking the Silly String idea too, LOL.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
soundofm

The vote to HIRE Bearden is what wildcat was speaking of. The contract issue was another matter. Boneheaded decision, yes. I also understand Key and Todd's reasoning. Also, remember Bearden can be fired with due cause.
And once again you can't keep up. Todd and Key tried to keep the contracted time for the vote on Bearden's renewal..after the new board would take over. Smith,Smola and Presberg pushed for it to be done before the sitting of the new board ( 3-2). I think you better start paying closer attention.

patkebb
patkebb's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/22/2012
You are wrong

Listen to the audio of the June 18th school board meeting (posted on school board web site). Todd and Key voted for the superintendent's contract extension; furthermore, they did NOT state ANY displeasure with the superintendent during the discussion.

Veritas
Veritas's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/23/2010
Patkebb YOU AIN'T RIGHT!

Where did I state Todd and Key didn't vote for Beardens contract??? I Said it Was "Boneheaded".That's your problem you jump in with out facts, without reading and without comprehension. You have consistently made erroneous statements here today. You Ain't Right!! ;-)

suggarfoot
suggarfoot's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/10/2007
thank you wildcat

that is one of the few good things I've heard so far. If some of the parents want to move to the empty school, Rivers, that is good. It has been empty how many years?

I agree this pitting neighborhoods against each other needs to stop. I'm very disgusted with Hollowell, Smith, and Smola for doing that.

suggarfoot
suggarfoot's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/10/2007
thank you wildcat

that is one of the few good things I've heard so far. Some of the parents want to move to the empty school, Rivers. It has been empty how many years?

I agree this pitting neighborhoods against each other needs to stop. Pandering to PTOs at ..some schools. for votes is just plain wrong and hurtful. I'm very disgusted with Hollowell, Smith, and Smola for doing that.

g8trgrl
g8trgrl's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/31/2007
The empty Rivers Elem School

Some of the parents DON'T want to move to the empty school too......

suggarfoot
suggarfoot's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/10/2007
then let them have a part in the deal

I would love to see ALL the parents be given a voice.

soundofm
soundofm's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/27/2009
Todd and Key are part of the problem

duplicate - see #10 above.

Recent Comments