Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Decatur School Board Pulls Superintendent's Arse Out of the Fire

Nearly one month after 3 Administrators retired from the MSD Decatur Township school district with wads of cash, extra years of service purchased from the State Teacher Retirement Fund, and a promise of paid health insurance until Medicare picks them up - all clearly prohibited by School Board policy and not a part of any contract - the School Board ratified the unilateral action by Superintendent, Don Stinson.

Remember these names -- Dale Henson, Don Huffman, Doug Greenwald, Judy Collins, and Cathy Wiseman.

I have called them a rubber stamping school board numerous times. But, to continue to do so is to do a disservice to rubber stamping school boards everywhere. They are eyeball deep in fiscal recklessness that makes their past behavior pale in comparison and should make every taxpayer in Decatur Township extremely nervous.

Dale Henson, Don Huffman, Doug Greenwald, Judy Collins, and Cathy Wiseman are now equal players with Don Stinson in running our school district into the ground. For the second time this month, the school board has unanimously approved unilateral action taken by the Superintendent without prior board approval. For the second time this month, the school board has unanimously thrown fiscal responsibility out the window, making the fiscal morass we are in far far worse than even I imagined it could or would be.

For this post I will discuss the action taken last Thursday, July 29, 2010, at a special meeting of the Board. Just as I speculated (see "Suddenly - Decatur School Board Calls Special Session"), the purpose of that meeting was to legalize the retirement packages given by Don Stinson to retiring Administrators Jeff Baer, Dave Rather, Pat Jones, Gary Pellico, and Janet Larch.

I have already shared with you the retirement package information (see "Decatur Administrator Severance Packages Really Sweet") that amounted to over $800,000 this year and, additionally, up to $100,000 in coming years for ongoing health insurance costs. I also shared with you the 2004 Board policy that specifically banned this type of retirement package (see "Decatur Administrator Severance Packages in Contradiction of School Board Policy"). This was part of a statewide effort to become more fiscally responsible and buy out the retirement promises made in contracts, but for which no money had been set aside. It cost Decatur taxpayers at least $8 million to buy out these unfunded liabilities.


But, Don Stinson gave his retiring pals some great parting gifts anyway. And the school board unanimously pulled his arse out of the fire, tossed the taxpayers arses into the fire, and approved these retirement packages - EVEN THOUGH 3 of the 5 LEFT THE DISTRICT nearly a MONTH before.


The agenda for Thursday's meeting simply said "Staff Report". Surprise Decatur. Not only did they approve Stinson's unilateral action, they increased the severance package for Jeff Baer by $1000, and for Gary Pellico by a whopping $22,030.66. Nice job Dale Henson, Don Huffman, Doug Greenwald, Judy Collins, and Cathy Wiseman.

We can't afford to keep Lynwood open as an elementary school, thereby increasing class sizes, but we can give these 5 people over $800,000 as a parting gift -- on top of the contract buyouts we paid for in 2004-2005 -- on top of the money we have been putting into the Indiana State Teacher Retirement Fund for them every year since -- on top of the money we have put into three other retirement funds for each of them every year since -- and which was rightly banned by School Board policy and which was not a contractual obligation.

Remember this Decatur taxpayers. Remember this Decatur parents.

Remember these names: Dale Henson, Don Huffman, Doug Greenwald, Judy Collins, Cathy Wiseman, and Don Stinson.

Below are the retirement packages awarded, as reported in the Resolution adopted Thursday:



Added ISTRF
Contribution
Health
Insurance
Life
Insurance
Baer$149,966.50$19,284 / yr$365.00 / yr
Rather167,733.5516,428 / yr365.00 / yr
Jones160,727.8716,428 / yr365.00 / yr
Pellico170,472.1416,428 / yr365.00 / yr
Larch100,895.3619,284 / yrn/a

78 comments:

Anonymous said...

These people have taken the contempt for the township to a new level.

It's not surprising.

Anonymous said...

The bureaucratic Decatur school system needs serious changes to lead to a realistic "JOURNEY TO EXCELLENCE".
The words "Journey to Excellence" in reality are Stinson's motto for the Administrators' and his retirement plans. For those who refuse to believe the truth in black and white are as if a blind leader will lead those who are also blind will follow him into a ditch. We the People need to remember that the School Board are accountability for their actions. When the Board members hear our complaints, they just shrugs their shoulders and tell us to "GET LOST, NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS, DON"T WORRY ABOUT IT!" well shame on them, IT IS OUR BUSINESS and IT IS OUR PROBLEM because its our tax dollars that pays for this mess created by the School Board and Administrators. We really need to think about these things that are serious problems for our children being left behind by those who are blind and foolish.
We as a community need a plan to get our schools on the road for a bigger,better,and brighter tomorrow. Here are some ideas-
1. Petition for a recall for the current School Board Members to elect new Members.
2. Appoint a new School Superintendent with a business degree to manage the school corporation with a one year contract.
3. Two Assistant Superintendents, one with a degree in education and second handles the financial department.
4. New strict guidelines in bylaws handling matters on conflict of interest, raises, and promotions.
5. Terminating School Principals and Teachers who fell to meet educational standards for our children's needs in the classrooms.
When our children grades are going down each year while the cost of running the educational system just keep going up, up, and up, something is very troubling.

Anonymous said...

I promise you, I will spit at the feet of each and every board member I run into in this township. I'd give the same treatment to Diamond Don and his band of admin thieves, if any of them lived here. Stinson's "journey to excellence" refers to the projected "excellence" of his fat-cat lifestyle after he retires.

Anonymous said...

I guess I don't get it. Aren't employees entitled to retirement? What's the problem.

Anonymous said...

No one said that employees shouldn't get a retirement, Skippy. Perhaps you should take the time to re-read what Pat wrote, and then try to think of it from the viewpoint of a Decatur Twp taxpayer.

Anonymous said...

Anon 8:21....LOL skippy? I am a Decatur Township Taxpayer and I read what Pat wrote and I STILL don't understand the problem. OK? For those of us "skippies" that aren't as smart as you or Pat...

1. A handfull of administrators stepped up to the plate and retired. This saved the township money in wages.
2. The MSD Decatur Township gave them an incentive package.

3. The MSD Decatur Township gave them what they were legally due in retirement funds.

Without name calling, what's wrong with that?

Anonymous said...

Time to readjust your thong, Skippy. Your voice is getting shrill.

Anonymous said...

Several great teachers who retired this past year did not receive near the incentives that these administrators received. Their salaries were reduced from the budget, however it seems to be the same shell game that has been being played. At least one administrator was hired back as a consultant. I feel bad for Decatur taxpayers who will undoubtedly be asked for more money in an upcoming referendum. What will the budget be like this upcoming year without the "benefit" of all the retirees? We have lost a lot of great teachers to retirement this year with what appears to be only a short-term solution. The rich get richer when it comes to central office administration.

Anonymous said...

We could have retained some skilled teachers, or hired new ones with the torrent of cash the school board funneled into the already stuffed pockets of "retiring" administrators. Many of whom are coming back to work as well-paid "consultants" to continue serving as administrators. As if Stinson and the school board think we can't see their scam. Decatur has the most over-administrated and under-educated students in the state! Stinson has turned our school system into a retirement home for his loser administrator who couldn't make the cut at other districts.

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:07: Your post is exactly why I'm confused!!!! You allude that teachers didn't get any retirement packages yet administrators did? And what shell game are you talking about!? I don't see what all the drama is about!

Anonymous said...

According to the contract of the Speedway superintendent on the indystar.com website (under Data Central), the superintendent is paid $163,200 plus $1200 maximum for traval - SIGNIFICANTLY less than Diamond Don.

The retiring administrators - the Baers, Gary Pellico, David Rather, Patricia Jones, Janet Larch - will receive approximately $1 million over the next few years from Decatur along with "padded" pensions from the Teacher Retirement Fund and all of this is funded by tax dollars. The board, legislators, Diamond Don, State Teachers Retirement Fund administrators, Mitch, Tony Bennett, and those receiving these sweet dollars should be ashamed. Unfortunately, the ethics have been reinvented. The victims are children and they will carry these lessons for life.

Anonymous said...

Anon 10:23. OK so what we're spending a million dollars on retirement packages? If this were a corporation such as GM or Chrysler or whatever, the executives would be getting retirement packages to retire! Your continued use of "diamond don" is getting old and slanderous. State the facts and lay off the name calling. No laws have been broken, and nothing unethical has been done! If you can prove that actual laws were broken or ethics violated, then I'd have a different opinion. You're just wanting to stir up trouble and that's not constructive. If anything illegal or unethical were done, then it would be all over the media. The media would love a story like this if it were true. Since there is no media coverage then it can't be true. Start stating facts and leave the names out of it.

undaunted said...

first off i would like to say gm was a very horrible example to use.
second, this is decatur not a major corporation. i believe at one of the meetings they said 80% of the township receives some kind of government assistance. don was gonna take a 5% pay cut, the board decided 3% was ok. are you kidding me? $9000.00? some people here in decatur only make that in a year. lets be honest, if your making $300,000 a year bnfts included. the 5% wouldn't have been hurting anyone. that is close to half of a teachers salary. there have been many many poor financial decisions made. how can you not see that?

Anonymous said...

"No laws have been broken, and nothing unethical has been done! If you can prove that actual laws were broken or ethics violated, then I'd have a different opinion."

Pat has repeatedly posted links to the laws that were broken. Funny how that always escapes you.
___________

"Since there is no media coverage, then it can't be true".

I think you've been watching too many Jerry Springer shows. You don't REALLY believe that, do you?

You can put your bong down now, Gary. I think you're there. :)

Anonymous said...

Using Speedway's superintendent as a comparison is misleading. Speedway doesn't have as many schools, or as many students, in their district as Decatur does. Mr. Stinson has much greater responsibilities, and many more things on his plate than the Speedway superintendent does. We have to expect to pay if we want a superintendent and an admin team like Mr. Stinson has built. You think talent comes free?

Anonymous said...

Maybe Stinson could do with a little less on his plate? Or at least pay for his catered dinners out of his own pocket, instead of having the taxpayers foot the bill for feeding him and the school board?

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:43 a.m.

Please give specific info regarding the "results" of the talented administration??? Are you referring to increased student academic achievement or what measurement of this talent????? People feeling good after snacks???

Anonymous said...

It took a bunch of talent to create the financial mess. Better yet, the winner got more than a millian dollars like on America's Got Talent. Decatur got ripped off but the show must go on.

undaunted said...

anon 11:20am
my information came from the indianapolis star. maybe if you had attended the public speaking session in Dec you would have received a copy. if you do not see an ethics issue, you should have your morals reevaluated. i'm a bit offended by your remark of drug use. you should know i am a young mother of 4 raising my boys honestly and without assistance. i have a sense of humor so i will laugh it off. i have pitty for your ignorance and lack of concern for the children of our township.

Anonymous said...

You know...there WAS an election recently...and you KNOW.....the majority ruled FOR this School Board....

What's that tell you? LOL!

undaunted said...

that not enough are informed, that not enough care.

Anonymous said...

"You know...there WAS an election recently...and you KNOW.....the majority ruled FOR this School Board....

What's that tell you? LOL!"
________

Indeed. As they say in Washington, DC these days: "There was an election...WE won...now it's OUR turn to STEAL".

Enjoy. I got a sneaking suspicion that ol' Diamond Don has put his chubby little hand in the cookie jar at least once too often already.

Be patient.

Anonymous said...

Indystar.com has quote from Pellic regarding no clubs except Blue and Gold Academies at the elementary level. Pellico said: "There are no funds".

Well, well, well. The cost of the health insurance premiums for the retiring administrators (after they already received monies every year since 2003 in their VEBA accounts) would have easily paid for these clubs. Guilty, guilty, guilty. Sad, sad, sad.

Unfortunately, there will be more revealed next week.

Anonymous said...

What happened to that lady from WRTV 6? Don't remember her name; karen something? Wasn't she all over this mess last fall? Has anyone contacted her?

Anonymous said...

Her name was Kara Kenney. Call her - they should follow up on Stinson's statement that the community was going to be upset about all of the retirement info.

Anonymous said...

This information is very disturbing to me not only as a taxpayer but as a parent as well. I attended a meet the teacher night at the Gold Academy this evening for my daughter and I learned that Art class will only be offered second semester but of the recent budget cuts! What am I missing here??? We have hundreds of thousands of dollars to pay our current administrators as well as those who recently retired but we can't afford to hire an Art teacher at our elementary school??? What happened to putting our students first?

Had Enough Indy? said...

There is no doubt that there are well meaning apologists for the Administration and Board. There is no doubt that there are folks, well compensated, whose job includes opining on this particular blog.

The Board of Education is endowed with certain statutory responsibilities and authorities to speak for the electorate, NS they have willingly allowed their authority to be usurped by the Superintendent.

This is not good for the electorate.

This is not good for the Decatur taxpayer.

This is not good for the education of Decatur's children.

Much of it is not even legal.

There are those who want Decaturites to sweep it under the rug. Forgive the excesses as the cost of doing business.

But, that means accepting larger class sizes in trade for giving huge parting gifts to folks who led the County and State in salary and benefits even before Don Stinson unilaterally imposed his own rule over that of the duly elected Board of Education.

Just because the Board, nearly one month afterward, voted in favor of his unilateral action -- does not mean that they acted in the best interest of the taxpayers of Decatur, nor of the best interest of the education of the children of Decatur. Yet, they should be held accountable for these actions.

More on that later.

Let us be clear... This Board does all it can humanly do to serve the interests of Don Stinson, Superintendent. It has totally abandoned its responsibility to Decatur voters, Decatur taxpayers, and Decatur education.

Ask not what your Superintendent can do for education, ask what he can do for you -- and the Central Office denizens.

Anonymous said...

Looks like the Bountiful Father of Central Office, our one-and-only Diamond Don, took good care of his faithful obfuscator-in-chief, Gary Pellico. I hope Gary has plans for all that extra taxpayer cash in his pockets. No wonder Gary gets his shorts in a twist over this blog. :)

Anonymous said...

Anon 10:39 wrote:

"We have hundreds of thousands of dollars to pay our current administrators as well as those who recently retired but we can't afford to hire an Art teacher at our elementary school??? What happened to putting our students first?"
--------
Aside from supplying a few athletes to play on school-sponsored teams, students are simply an annoyance to our school board. To Diamond Don, Susan "Honey" Adams, and the other 40 administrators, students are an impediment to cash flow. Students unfortunately suck up a lot of taxpayer money that could be diverted into needy administrators' pockets. It's all about a "journey to excellence in retirement".

Anonymous said...

i think every one should stop referring to recently retired administrators. Not one of them has "retired". They have just flown away to another job with big bennies at another school district to fleece some one else. Some are returning here to keep on fleeceing us. Its all just a scam folks an our kids will pay for it in poor education. I wished better for my kids but I can't move out of this district now. i hope the school board and Stinson choke on their scam.

Anonymous said...

Anon 8:52a.m.

Who retired and went to another school district??

undaunted said...

does anyone know what the sticky stuff all over the carpet in the old lynwood building was last night? it was almost as if when you take a band aid off after a few days. it was gross and it was everywhere. on a good note, i met the blue acd principal last night. he was very kind, patient and informed. other then the most generic playground i am very much looking forward to the boys attending blue dilc this year. just think only 3% of pay from don and we could have a comparable playground as to the other elementary schools.

Yoda said...

The one comment that made sense in all this was; "if there was any wrongdoing or scandal, the press would be all over it."

HEI has given them more than enough ammunition if there were any real scandals or wrongdoing, they would be all over this and the township would be swimming with reporters.

The only thing I can conclude is that it is either not provable or not valid.

Anonymous said...

The only swimming going on around here is the administrators, past and present, who are swimming in taxpayers money. I'm not sure that the presence, or lack of presence, of the lame-stream media is a valid indicator of what's going on. But then I never got in the habit of subscribing to "Globe" or "The National Enquirer".

Anonymous said...

The local media covers many communities. The people outside of Decatur in Marion county are appalled and embarassed by the Decatur board and superintendent. They have seen the media reports and Decatur's mess is "beyond" them. Want media coverage - petition for the dismissal of the superintendent and recall of the board. Then, the media will believe that Decatur is serious about a reinvention.

Anonymous said...

I was the one that posted about the media being all over this. Media LOVES this kind of story! If any laws were broken...if anything even smelled like a law was broken...the media would be slobbering all over the township. LOL if karen kennedy wont touch it then there is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING THERE! LOL! You people just want to make trouble. You people just WANT something to be wrong. Why can't you just be positive and turn this negative energy into constructive energy!? I said it once and I'll say it again. If no media coverage then no problems. LOL!

Anonymous said...

Anon 1:00: How about YOU start the petition? I'll sign it and help you get signatures. Thought so. Typical Decatur mentality.

Anonymous said...

OK anon 1:17 how’s this for a suggestion? Why doesn't someone form a committee...a real committee...to "take back Decatur schools". Remember the "take back Perry schools" campaign a few years back when Susan Adams showed herself on the Perry school board? IT WORKED! I don't think we can wait until 2012 elections. I think that’s a good idea about starting a petition drive!


1. Form a committee "take back Decatur schools".

2. Legally draft a recall notice and file it with the clerk of the court in Marion County.

3. Get signatures!

4. Yard signs "take back Decatur schools".

You want media coverage? You'll get it!

STEP UP! What’s it take!? Who's got the "cajones!”

Anonymous said...

GREAT!!!!!! You are correct - Perry took back their schools. Do it.

Had Enough Indy? said...

I am being told that there is no recall process for elected officials in Indiana.

Sorry folks.

Anonymous said...

HEI: Yes; but if a SYMBOLIC petition for recall were circulated....perhaps that would be a shot across the bows?

Anonymous said...

Since the resolution for the retirement packages was clearly a cover-up for not following the board's decision several years ago to end unfunded liabilities, is it possible to call for a grand jury investigation?

Anonymous said...

Wonder how Decatur gets accredoted by the North Central Association when there is no public input allowed before decisions like this are made?????

The symbolic recall surely would be covered by the media?

Anonymous said...

typo sorry - should read: accredited by the North Central Association

Jon said...

The only school district in Indiana that can recall school board members is IPS.

Anonymous said...

Anon 10:32. "OK so what we're spending a million dollars on retirement packages? If this were a corporation such as GM or Chrysler or whatever, the executives would be getting retirement packages to retire!"

Anon, you seem to forget that this is a not for profit school corporation. Your comparison to GM shows clearly that you are a member of the "untouchable CO or board" who feels that by throwing out the name of a large corporation that the taxpayers will scratch their heads and say it must be OK. Township taxpayers are NOT idiots and know that the top brass of GM was replaced. A not for profit organization is not eligible for a government bailout either. WE NEED TO TAKE BACK OUR SCHOOLS. As others have said, Perry did it and so can we. Perry readers, please post suggestions.

No laws have been proven broken, but time will certainly tell. It depends on your definition and that of the taxpayers whether any-thing is or has been unethical.

Pat is not trying to stir up trouble. She posts the cold, hard facts with proving links and that IS constructive. What taxpayers choose to do with the information can be VERY constructive for our kids future.

"Since there is no media coverage then it can't be true." Who had heard of Marcus Schrenker or Bernie Madoff till they couldn't keep their sticky fingers out of their clients life savings? The clock is ticking!

August 5, 2010 10:32 AM

Anonymous said...

Plan to attend the public budget hearing for the Decatur budget on August 17 at 7p.m. Everyone has the right to speak at the public budget hearing. Tell the board what you expect them to spend the dollars on for students' education. Tell them you do not want dollars spent on administrator retirements. They don't have to answer questions but they are required to let the public speak. Attendance itself is speaking. Get at least 100 people to attend. If you need help with babysitting or transportation to the meeting let the blog know this week. Don't worry if the board and superintendent believe that 100 will attend then the media will be there. If 100 don't attend then there is another piece of evidence that people either don't care or have given up so they can say that they have the support of the community.

Anonymous said...

Uh.....JON...... Buddie you need to pick up and read the Indiana Code (laws)it is in there...it applies to all board members in every school district in Indiana can be recalled.

Anonymous said...

Greetings from Perry Twp!

We indeed took our schools back, but our mistake in allowing self-serving, self-centered bums like Susan Adams onto our school board cost us dearly!!! Your first step is to organize and come to meetings in large numbers. Invite the media, they will come. Raise so much hell that you at least gridlock the school board from taking any additional action to blow even more money. As board members come up for re-election, vote them out. Our problems were over once Susan Adams realized she wasn't going to get the superintendents job at our schools, no matter who she fired. She left and has taken her buddy Mr. Harris with her. Our gain is your loss, it seems. From what I've read here she and Harris have found the right home with your Mr. Stinson. Never give up. It your kids future on the line.

Perry Twp Parent

Anonymous said...

Stinson was Adams' mentor and advisor as to the elimination of Dr. Williams. Decatur residents are not as actively involved as Perry residents. Besides that, Decatur residents have been put down for years and years. Stinson took advantage of all of this. The board members don't get it plus several of them benefited from this kind of leadership. The students are really the victims. Student achievement gains are not documented but the board and central office administrators all feel good. The parents need Perry Township parents to give ideas and suggestions.

Had Enough Indy? said...

anon 11:55 -- please point me to the code where recalls are talked about. If not the exact location, then its general vicinity. I looked in different election sections and I searched for 'recall' and 'remove from office' and found nothing. In addition, I am being told by somebody I consider knowledgeable, that there is no way to recall any elected official.

So, if you can point me in the right direction, I'd appreciate it.

Anonymous said...

The following was reported after the 2010 session of the Indiana legislature:

"Members of the Indiana General Assembly ended their session in March without passing any initiative legislation.

Two pieces of initiative legislation were considered in the past session. The most notable piece considered was House Bill 1137 which would allowed citizens to recall elected officials. The proposal allowed for recall of any statewide or local political subdivision officer with the signature requirement set at ten percent of votes casted in the last election for local and state legislative races and ten percent of votes casted in the last election for Secretary of State for statewide races[21]. The bill died in committee without seeing any floor votes in the General Assembly[22]."

Looks like it is not in the laws???? Maybe this is another reason to contact local legislators.

Anonymous said...

Even if the law doe not provide for recall of Indiana school board members, is there any law to prevent citizen from signing a petition calling for the resignation of the board members and superintendent??

Why is Decatur providing offices for the retired administrators who are being paid as consultants? Are they charging these consultants for heat/air/electricity/and other costs of office space. They charge a facility use charge for programs that work with kids????

The consultant "thing" is a joke.

Is TJ Whitfield a high school administrator or the director of transportation???

Anonymous said...

Jeff Baer and Candace Baer have returned from their two week trip to Europe. Hope his new watch keeps international time.

Candace will have an office next to Dr. Sullivan. Rather is at high school. The others will be a Southwest Pavilion. There should have been extra space at the Early Childhood Center??? They are all very busy.

Anonymous said...

Is there playground equipment at the Southwest Pavilion?

Anonymous said...

The people of Perry Township warn to be careful with Susan Adams. A witch is a woman who is spiteful or overbearing. Susan Adams is a witch.

Anonymous said...

Jeff went to Europe with Candace?

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:52 wrote:

Is there playground equipment at the Southwest Pavilion?
________

I don't imagine that the administrators would need any playground equipment. If they have a nicely appointed lounge where a weary administrator could relax, perhaps a sauna and showers, and a tastefully-decorated banquet room for their catered dinners at taxpayer expense, I expect that's all they'd need.

Anonymous said...

You people can't get 5 or 6 people to go to a school board meeting...how do you think you're going to "take back decatur schools" LOL! From what I've seen here you're all more interested in name calling and pointing fingers than "taking back decatur schools". Most of you don't even know when the school board meets LOL!

Anonymous said...

Hi, Gary. Haven't heard from you in a while. You been busy counting the bonus cash that Diamond Don threw your way? :)

Anonymous said...

Tomorrow is first day of school and most of the individual school websites have not been updated. Valley Mills does not list grade 5 and 6 teachers. When will Decatur get in touch with the 21st. century? Oh, yes, they are in search of excellence. Too busy reinventing.

Anonymous said...

"...widening the achievement gap".

Anonymous said...

Anyone got any "first day of school" horror stories?

HEI....how about a thread on "first day of school" horror stories?

We all know how incompetent this Administration and Board are; lets share some stories! LOL!

Anonymous said...

Well now that you mention it, I have a first day of school horror story. I stopped in at the main admin office and tried to get some copies of records so I would know how much of my property tax money is being used to fund the salaries and perks of the big-shot administrators and their high-dollar, hottie secretaries. Pellico has been refusing to honor my public records request. He says the salary records of admin fat cats are "private" information. His secretary told me he couldn't see me because it's the first day of school. LOL!

Had Enough Indy? said...

anon 10:31 -- salary or contracts are public records. You should contact the State Public Access Counselor at www.in.gov/pac or 234-0906.

They are extremely helpful. I can assure you that the name 'Gary Pellico' and the 'MSD Decatur Township' are very familiar to them.

Gary know full well that these things are open to the public. I only wish there were financial penalties for lying to people about public records or trying to intimidate folks from getting hold of them.

undaunted said...

not a horror story at this time. i do have to say i was very pleased with the boys bus driver. bus 59 was on time and she was very pleasant! i am gonna pop into lynwood on my lunch to make sure the kids have air, the sticky carpet has been cleaned and that if there are any construction workers still around that they have had background checks.

Anonymous said...

Some of you people are unbelievable! Your posts show that you are more concerned with finding something wrong and "wanting to post 1st day of school horror stories" than thinking about how exciting the first day of school is for so many of our kids! Get a life and quit trying to find the negative in everything!!!!!

Had Enough Indy? said...

undaunted - I only ever hear great things about our bus drivers. I'm sure we all want the first day of school to go smoothly for the kids. Your involvement is wonderful to see.

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:29 just whined:

Some of you people are unbelievable! Your posts show that you are more concerned with finding something wrong and "wanting to post 1st day of school horror stories" than thinking about how exciting the first day of school is for so many of our kids! Get a life and quit trying to find the negative in everything!!!!!
------------------------------

For Pete's Sake, Gary, you INVITED everyone to post a "horror" story about their first day at school. You thought you were being funny by doing so. So someone posts one about the frustration of trying to get public records from you, and you get your shorts in a twist and scold us for not think about the children. What happened to your LOL's? Did it stop being funny all of a sudden???

Listen up, money-bags, what motivates the rest of us here IS a deep concern for our children. How DARE you question that? Concern for our kids is a very real concept for us as parents, and not just a perverse slogan that you, Stinson, Baer, Adams, and the school board clowns use to con people into making more money available for you and your pals to fleece from our kids' pockets. How about coughing up the public records the previous poster wants? Remember, you're not working for GM. LOL! LOL! LOL!

Anonymous said...

anon 10:31 They not only are public records but the state requires school districts to publish an annual report of salaries; DP100R. How do you think the Star published all of the Marion County superintendent's contracts?

Anonymous said...

anon 11:49

First and foremost, I am not "Gary". I too am a parent in this township that is sick of listening to all the negative comments that go on. I get on this blog from time to time like many do to find out information. While I have concerns for the way a lot of things are being handled with our administrators, it really gets old listening to some people complain about everything instead of trying to offer solutions in a positive way. I have taught my children that unless you want to get involved and try to make a bad situation better, you have no room to sit back and complain about it. I am not very knowlegeable about some of policies, laws, budgets and so forth that are discussed on here, but what I do know is that even if I can't change some of these things, I can stay actively involved in my childs education (just like every other parent is able to do) to ensure that they are getting the education they deserve.

Anonymous said...

Nice try, Gary. No "parent" in this township would be that stupid. LOL! LOL! LOL!

Anonymous said...

quote ---

"what I do know is that even if I can't change some of these things, I can stay actively involved in my childs education (just like every other parent is able to do) to ensure that they are getting the education they deserve."

Exactly. Participating in this blog is another of many ways to stay involved in my child's education. It has become obvious I can trust my child's future to the Decatur School Board or Superintendent.

undaunted said...

i only work in an office. so i might be wrong in thinking that paperwork is very important in prooving facts and researching so that someone might "offer solutions"? so i think anon 10:31 has every right to complain.

that being said, you speak of offering solutions as if they are taken seriously in our township. i would like to know which group you are affiliated with that has made headway with the decisions made regarding our children?

Anonymous said...

Anon 1:03 wrote:

"While I have concerns for the way a lot of things are being handled with our administrators, it really gets old listening to some people complain about everything instead of trying to offer solutions in a positive way".

Okay...don't tell me you think we should get behind Diamond Don and Coach Webster and push through a referendum to send Stinson MORE momey. Is that what you call a "positive" solution? LOL! LOL!

Pat and others here have consistently laid out positive solutions for the problems we face in the MSD. Trouble is, they just are "solutions" that fit the "vision" of Diamond Don, the school board and their fat cat cronies. Who you trying to kid?

undaunted said...

sorry proving

Anonymous said...

A positive solution might begin with the voluntary resignation of the superintendent. Decatur has provided him with a healthy retirement and no one needs to feel bad. The new superintendent will have a very difficult job but at least it won't be getting worse every day.

Phil Webster said...

I want like to read from those of you who have been so critical of our administration about what is right about our schools. Do you believe that there is anything that is good about our schools? We have graduated successful articulate and intelligent people like yourself who are now engaged in successful employment and participating fully in what we call the American way of life.

All I read about is how the money is being misspent and accusations that the administration is secretly operating in concert to rob the children and spend the money on themselves. I have know these people for a long time and they are good people with good intentions and they are attempting to improve our schools as best they can. They are not evil , selfish people that many of you on this blog want to make them out to be. If you got to know them you would like them and you would trust them. I am sure that if I could sit down with all of you we would like each other and together we could accomplish great things for our children. If we are not part of the solution to the problem then we are probably part of the problem

I think we can all agree that we have major financial problems. After just one day in school we can see that class size is way up, programs like physical education, and art have been cut. Schools do not have playground equipment. Teachers at the high school are being asked to teach five and six class and many schools are operating without teacher aids or assistance. Please remember that the people who were offered early retirement are college educated professional people who deserve a retirement package equal to retiring people in the private sector. Actually the money that was offered to the retiree’s of Decatur Township Schools is not even close to what is offered to a comparable retiree in private industry. If we are going to improve our schools we must compete with the private sector for quality administrative people.

It needs to be remembered that the cost to the taxpayer for the cost to educate their child is much less that it would be if their child were to attend a private school. For example if a typical taxpayers tax bill for schools were 1000 dollars a year and they had three children the cost per child would be 250 dollars. If this taxpayer were to put their three children in day care or private high school like Park Tudor , Cathedral or Brebuef the cost could be 8,000 dollars a child or 24, 000 dollars a year. Decatur Central High School has recently graduated students who are now graduating from medical school, writing for national publications, who are receiving their doctorate degrees and are distinguishing themselves on the athletic field in colleges throughout the United States. If a child wants a great education in a great educational setting with the help of great teachers Decatur Central is the place.

Wouldn't you agree that firing everyone is the last resort not the first one. Working together to solve a common problem is a better strategy than lets fire them all and let God sort out the good ones. We can work together to solve the problems that divide us . Come to the school board meetings and come to meet the teachers nights and attend the athletic and artistic events to show support to our students and schools I believe in Public Education. I hope you do also. We need to work together against the forces that want to drive us apart. If we can infuse some cash into the system through a one time only referendum we can solve the problems created by this temporary financial crisis. Remember the famous words of FDR when he said that the only thing we have to fear is ----------. Maybe we need a town hall meeting to discuss the problems facing our community and our schools . Pat if you want to call a meeting let me know the location and I will be there