Thursday, February 25, 2010

Your Turn - Wednesday's Special Session

Many comments about last night's Decatur School Board's Special Session have been added to the last post. So, please check there as well. But, if you went last night - what happened? What are your thoughts?

17 comments:

Indy Student said...

Pat,

I enjoy reading about your covering of Decatauer Township schools. But I don't live in that township. I live in Pike. Is there someone covering Pike Township politics as much, or even as close, as you are Decatauer?

Had Enough Indy? said...

Thanks Indy Student - Paul Ogden might take up some issues arising in Pike as he is a candidate for school board up there. How about it Paul? I understand from his blog that somebody in Washington Township is calling out that district in a security contract.

We do need more eyes on the school districts. How about you taking up the Pike School District in your blog?

Anonymous said...

Pat,

Did anything get done with Huffman's grandson who is now the FB coach lastnight? The rumor was that he will be offered the Assistant AD job so he can stay at the school due to the fact that he would be one of the first layoffs.

Had Enough Indy? said...

anon 11:56 - I have no concrete, documented, information. A comment left in the last entry said that Kelly McWilliams, whose job as Asst. Principal at the High School was eliminated, has been assigned as AD. They indicate there will be only one AD.

Again - nothing concrete.

Anonymous said...

It has been said "Some people change their ways when they see the light, others when they feel the heat."

Another has said "Any squirrel can tell you that when you lose track of your acorns, they can grow into sprawling Oaks."

Hope we can find concrete date and continue to follow this sad story so the victims are able to recover.

Anonymous said...

I have reason to believe that Dave Rather will retire at the end of the year and then be brought back as a "consultant" in the athletic department(a.k.a. Co-Athletic Director). He is currently being paid through the construction funds but when that job is done they need to find another way to bring him back onto the payroll.

Also, my understanding is that Dixon(Huffman's grandson)is safe because he is on the New Tech School staff. For some reason, New Tech teachers have some kind of exemption through the state and because of their "special training" are not subject to the normal RIFing rules.

Anonymous said...

The district is still very top heavy administratively....both a Central Office and at the High School and for all the satellites. At CO, there is Rather, Pellico, Candice M-Baer. At the HS what about Whitfield, Tooley, Duzenbury, Wachnicki and Preda? Then you add in Pietrzak (DEC) and Leineweber (DDA), and whether you call them directors, principals, assistant principals or captains, it doesn't appear that many possible cuts have been made at the HS or at CO????
Bringing back Rather after he retires just continues the cronyism...but then what athletic experience does the new AD have??

Anonymous said...

Has it been verified with DEA about the New Tech teachers?? Teachers have been told that their hire date or board approval date will determine where each is on the seniority list? There was no mention of any New Tech exemption...no one at the HS has ever talked about that???

Anonymous said...

Is it true that they are going to hire a new principal at Valley Mills? Why? They could assign Candice Baer or Gary Pellico there? What about Rather? What about Sullivan? Ah - they are not going to reduce administrators.

Had Enough Indy? said...

anon 7:56 - there are no real cuts in the central office. They counted Jeff Baer's job as one when they already hired his replacement. Candice Baer is already leaving. And, they are said to be moving Preda to CO - counting that as a cut as at the high school, while no real salary savings can accrue.. Let the teachers go, close Lynwood, let class size increase - but do not touch the administrators. Oh, ya, don't forget that the CO is moving to the bigger, better offices at the Southwest Pavilion (former Concentra Building).

anon 10:23 - the only thing I have heard is that the New Tech section of the high school cannot be headed by a Principal who also oversees a second section - due to Gates Foundation grant stipulations. It doesn't make sense that specific teacher personel cannot be changed. Not that Stinson won't make claims to that effect. But, it doesn't make sense.

Anonymous said...

Pat, you might be able to answer this since you were on the Decatur school board: I noticed there was no item on the agenda for public comment. Is that typical of a special session?

Had Enough Indy? said...

anon 9:05 -- it is the Board's agenda and may contain any elements that the Board wishes it to contain. Evidently, this Board did not wish to hear from 'Patrons' at this Special Session. And, it may be that they only wish to hear from 'Patrons' at the beginning of regular meetings. But, at the end of the day, it is whatever the Board wants that is part of the agenda.

It may just be too long ago, but I don't remember so many 'special sessions'. I do remember work sessions around budget time. And 'special sessions' to hear specifically from the community on issues from athletic handbooks to building plans. But, I don't remember 'special sessions' where the focus was NOT on public input.

Anonymous said...

The "new" principal at Valley Mills will be someone currently in the district. However it has yet to be determined which person it will be. I am not sure if it is a current administrator or another position moved up to an administrator level.

Anonymous said...

But this is confusing. If the new person is an administrator the salary/benefits saved in the reduction of the principal position at DILC GOLD will not be saved. If they don't need to save this money fine but if they need to save money so they don't have to cut dozens of teacher position then the public and teachers are being falsely led.

Anonymous said...

I do not think the New Tech teachers have an exemption. They are in the same boat as the others. It is interesting that NPR had a report about Decatur on it this week, but failed to mention anything about the money issues that they are currently having.

Kelly will be good at AD, but I'm interested in seeing who they make as her assistant. The speculation on that is running rampant.

Also has anyone heard anything about certain sport teams being cut?

Anonymous said...

Some say that the posts and comments on this blog are rumors or slander.

I say it doesn't matter if it's lies, truth or somewhere in between: nature abhors a vacuum. If the admininistration and the union don't communicate with the families and staff in an open, timely manner, the people will, by nature, and for their own survival, scratch and claw for any information. Questionable information is more believable than none at all. And if our leaders don't figure that out, even their best intentions and well executed plans are doomed.

Anonymous said...

I agree with anon 4:29. One problem is that their "intentions" are circumspect and for all appearances appear to be very selfish and self-serving. Pat has given us very factual information including copies of memos and other state documents. We do not even have all of the documentation that is public information. It is almost as if they are "begging" for trouble. The history of misspending is long and not isolated cases/mistakes. You are correct that they have publicly criticized those who are asking very legitimate questions. Those who are asking questions did not make these mistakes. We will probably be shocked as more verifiable information is shared.