Apparently a new “policy” came from the State today- kids at charters who participate in sports at public schools- must play for the school closest to their home, not the school closest to their other school.
Kids who go to DECA and have played at Belmont for years, now are being told they have to go to Meadowdale.
Only two slight problems- DECA gets out at 3:30, Belmont gets out at 3:40 and Meadowdale, all the way across the city- gets out at 2:30. DECA is literally a 10 minute bike ride to Belmont.
Beam me up Scotty, no signs of intelligent life here.
Supposedly this came down from OHSAA, which has no idea of how convoluted our district is.
This isn’t about the kids, it’s not for the kids, it’s payback for DPS hiring Mark “the cheater” Baker to a two year contract.
It’s time this entire board goes, Baker goes, and someone gets fired for stealing the money from the gates of whatever sporting events were stolen.
The buck, literally, has to stop somewhere and soon.
This policy is insane, as is the entire premise of local control if this rule is allowed to stand.
Parents are livid. Kids are crying. Who benefits from this policy?
In other words, our District AD knew back in April (or should have) and sat on it.
Rule 1- if you don’t want to download the PDF (Which I’ve attached) here is the key language:
“For a matriculating 9th grade student whose parents live within the district and the student is a nontraditional/specialty student, home educated student, community school student, STEM school student or a non-public school student wanting to utilize Bylaw 4-3-1 exception 4 or 6 to participate in athletics at a high school where they are not enrolled, the district shall assign these students to the high school nearest to their parents’ residence within the district or, if separate attendance zones have been created, to the closest high school within the attendance zone of their parents’ residence regardless of whether that member school is poor performing. (* **See “notes” for additional information regarding non-public school students and home educated students). Note also that parents who live outside this multiple high school district may choose to send a 9th grade student to a non-traditional/specialty school within the district. Such a student shall be assigned for athletics at the district high school which is closest to the parents’ residence outside the district.
The agenda for last nights review session wasn’t quite complete. Many more resignations that were turned in on the 10th weren’t included. While the board was falling all over itself for their “New Digital Dashboard” for reviewing their slow improvement from failure to mediocrity, the question of how we’ll even open school in the fall isn’t mentioned.
Scratch one Megan Winston from the roster. Winston, one of their “star” principals, who took over from Tracy Mallory several years back (another “star” principal who is now working in Trotwood) resigned yesterday. And while Corr was meeting today with the remaining principals for their planning for next year this morning at 9:30 there are two in the audience ready to resign, just finalizing their contracts with other districts. Principals contracts actually run through July 31- so if you leave early, you may owe the district some money back. Of course, if DPS was smart- 1) they would work hard not to lose them- by paying better and having a contract in place, and 2) have a way to keep these valuable assets on to manage a building transition via a per diem wage.
Dr. Adil Baguirov was in fine form, boasting that the district was the first in Ohio to have such amazing technology, and possibly in the midwest. Taylor actually asked Dayton Daily news reporter Jeremy Kelley to write about this stunning achievement. Apparently, she missed the group MMS I sent to the board members and Kelley- of a link to an undated article from Columbus about their new data dashboard.
The boards internal auditor, Randall Harper, gave the paper another freebie bad news story about the Athletic Department having yet another loss of funds from athletic event collections. Board members asked how this happened- and the auditor blamed a failure to follow the procedures put in place. The Dayton Daily made inquiries on who what where and how much and got the dodgy responses we just love (he can’t hide it- so why they don’t answer truthfully is unbelievable). If this theft is related to anything relating to Dunbar athletics- it would and could have impacted the vote later- to rehire coach Powell. Whole thing was strange. In any company I work at- you steal money, you get a pink slip, not a nice request to write an IOU.
The funniest faux pas came from Dr. Sheila Burton while walking the board through the data dashboard. When looking at attendance numbers- she publicly questioned the work of The Ohlmann Group, who the board hired to do marketing and enrollment campaigns but came up short. Why this contract is still in place, if you are publicly going to slam your sub-contractor is beyond me. Full disclosure, my firm was the low bidder, and the highest ranking minority firm- and didn’t get the contract. This has been extensively covered on this site.
Last but not least, Board Member Sheila Taylor wanted to go into executive session over the Darran Powell hiring – and another personnel issue that she wanted separate but didn’t want to identify by name. Well, it’s too late in the meeting to remove an item and not be by name. If she had prepared properly, reading the agenda- she should have had the item removed from the agenda in advance. Despite all her years on the board, she still seemed lost at the basics of Robert’s rules of order- and the process to vote something separate. This is part of the reason this board is beyond help.
No discussion of the board negotiations, school start dates, or questions about the mass exodus of talent.
PDF of resignations and HR issues for 11 Jul 17 board meeting. Click to read
It’s not funny anymore.
Today, July 10, was the final day to officially quit Dayton Public Schools- even though there is no contract.
Five administrators quit- including the only person in the district who could edit their website- Jill Drury. The hiring process for the new person to run their marketing hasn’t begun, or at least, they haven’t contacted the candidates.
Teachers and administrators we already told you about were announced, but, the part that hurts the most? 36 teachers headed out for greener pastures. Including 2 more from Stivers, the one building good teachers try to get into.
One of the teachers resigning was teacher of the year a few years back. And, btw- 36 teachers is like losing an entire school full- in one day.
Considering the district looks to be going on strike this fall, how many teachers will be lining up to work here? Exactly.
There were also some odd adjustments being made. All the top administrators now get $350 a month for business expenses. Maybe, because no one was watching this before.
And- adjustments had to be made- including $16,484.90 to Dr. Winston who quit and you read it first here. The money will come in handy, to pay her lawyer for the lawsuit that is probably coming against the district for EEOC violations and adverse working conditions.
When you have to make “one time payments” this big to fix something- most people would wonder who was asleep at the wheel? Why isn’t someone getting fired?
From Board Docs:
Dr. Elizabeth Lolli – $12,892.18 (one-time payment)
Dr. Markay Winston – $13,484.90 (one-time payment)
Speaking of getting fired, some of the board members are at a point where they are seriously considering if it’s worth it to keep Rhonda Corr, or better to just pay her off to go away.
If you add up all the resignations for the year of teachers- it’s over 20% turnover. Anyone in business will tell you, 20% annual turnover is deadly.
If this district were a horse, someone would shoot it.
Dunbar Football coach AGAIN.
One other thing on the agenda for tomorrow night- Coach James Lacking, the head Dunbar football coach before Darran Powell, declined the position on line 43. Line 255 is another attempt to hire Darran Powell back. Last time, since Ron Lee abstained, and Baguirov wasn’t there and Taylor and Lacey said no– leaving only 3 to vote. We’ll see if the vote comes out different tomorrow night. And, btw- don’t come expecting to speak- this is another one of their endless Review sessions.
“Half of the preschool department is leaving for various school districts-roughly 16 teachers. Most are special-needs preschool teachers who are going to various districts that still have four day preschool- that understand that you cannot get IEP work done effectively without a planning day. Thank you for bringing to light all of these ridiculous decisions.”
A principal with enough seniority to retire twice- (almost)- says, “If she stays, or Roberson is made superintendent, I’m out. Bring back Lawrence, Brathwaite and I’ll stay” (David Lawrence and Debra Brathwaite- former DPS administrators) Als0- “they are cutting half of my Title 1 reading and math intervention specialists, and replacing them with a phonics coach. I don’t need a separate person to teach phonics, just give my 1st and 2nd grade teachers training, and we’ve got it covered. What a waste of money”
A teacher- “Hello David I also will be resigning although I have not told my principal or human resources yet, but I am a science teacher at XXXXX one of only two physics teachers in the district and I will be going to teach at a small county school where the pay is only $1200 difference with smaller class sizes and my kids also go to the school where I will be teaching next year. I didn’t even apply for the job…?, I was recruited by community members who knew I had a science background..that’s how bad science teachers are needed all over the state. U can mention my case, just don’t mention my name or school”
I’m still waiting for other school boards to approve the hiring of 2 other principals and one top level administrator. There is a possibility of 2 additional names to add to this list.
The last minute agenda, for a School Board that can’t get it together. PDF- click to view
The School Board is supposedly meeting at 4:30 pm today, a meeting that was hastily called Tuesday night- after another hastily called meeting. The agenda wasn’t published until this morning- and it appears it’s the entire appropriations for next year. Can someone explain why this wasn’t known to have to be done before Tuesday night? And why the public shouldn’t have been given adequate notice and time to review the issues? 48 hour rule? We’re lucky to have a 4 hour rule under Rhonda Corr and Hiwot Abraha.
More examples of complete and total incompetence and mastery of management by the seat of her pants by the current Superintendent and Treasurer.
Time to clean house, before there isn’t a house left.
Any more people want to tell the board about their resignation here first? [email protected]
And, btw, it was nice to see the Dayton Daily News share the story of Judge Dankof ruling in favor of the district over former treasurer Craig Jones – 2 days after I published it. Jones’ lawsuit was about this very BS kind of meeting announcement. Dankof obviously doesn’t care about the intent of the law- only the minutiae. Hopefully, next time he runs, he has opposition, since he doesn’t deserve to represent a public he won’t defend properly against abuse of power by other elected officials.
Every minute that Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt (FUD) reign supreme under Rhonda Corr, the talent makes plans to leave. The board, unwilling to admit their massive failure of hiring Corr, of keeping Baker (while turning Darren Powell into the only fall guy), of the insane Reduction in Force mid-year, the questionable real estate deals negotiated by Adil Baguirov (and maybe Corr?), the botched buyout of David Lawrence (probably their only option for a superintendent), then the failure to investigate allegations that Baguirov didn’t even live in the district, then allowing him to somehow negotiate a bus deal, without action by purchasing (an insane violation of board policy) followed by the resignation and pending investigation into the short lived tenure of Rhonda’s hand picked Chief Academic Officer, Dr. Markay Winston….
and now- the envelope please…. Leaving the Dayton Public Schools
Dwon Bush is leaving the district to be an Elementary School Principal in Huber Heights- if her name sounds familiar, it’s because they tried to RIF her, and had a student make a compelling plea to keep her.
Vanisa Turney-Crews, an assistant principal at Kiser is leaving to be the Director of Curriculum and Instruction in Huber Heights.
Taylor Porter, who was Corr’s initial pick to be the principal at Meadowdale when the fan hit the shan, is going to Westerville to be an assistant principal.
Monica Utley, the principal of Fairview- gone.
Valerie Herdman, a future principal- gone.
Sam Eckhardt a superstar high school math teacher at Thurgood- leaving for Xenia. Math teachers are hard to come by.
Ralph Davis – is leaving, one of the key players in the Males of Color program.
And, because they haven’t had their new contracts boarded in their new assignments- there are at least 2 more principals leaving Dayton and 1 more administrator.
The resignation deadline is July 10. There will be plenty more. And while next week there are going to be 2 meetings to negotiate a contract, Corr is the reason that talks got shelved until August.
As long as she’s on top, people are gonna go.
Best case scenario: The board investigates Baguirov, he resigns, Lee and Rountree step down early as they both clearly are tiring of the fight, 3 people who’ve successfully turned in petitions get picked randomly for filling in until the election.
The new board invalidates the Baker contract- fires Corr for cause, fires Hiwot Abraha who can’t get her work done on time, or run purchasing legally, brings back Darran Powell as Head Football Coach (we don’t have time for this sideshow) and gets down on their knees to ask Lawrence to step in as interim.
If they ask nice enough, he may even come in and count part of his buyout as pay until next June.
If they don’t stop the resignations, and get a tentative contract in place before July 7, 2017- or at least have a man with a plan, their may not be enough people to put on a show next year. My guess, is instead, we’ll see that Baguirov has successfully completed his mission- to turn the district into such a clusterduck that the State can come in and turn the whole district into a charter and hand it over to the alternate “school board” Learn to Earn Dayton, and make sure the right people get paid off.
The longer lists of resignations are coming. If you are planning to resign, feel free to contact me to be added to the list. Tell me where you’re going and why if you’d like the public to know what the Reign of Corr hath brought. [email protected]
Update: 1 hour after publishing- have unconfirmed reports of another star principal leaving, and one who is considered a grand dame- may be fed up and turning in her resignation as well if Corr isn’t removed ASAP.
In accordance with Section 3313.16 of the Ohio Revised Code and File: BD of the Handbook of Policies, Rules & Regulations of the Board, I hereby call for a special meeting of the Board of Education of the Dayton City School District, Montgomery County, Ohio, to be held on Friday, June 30, 2017 at 4:30 p.m. in room 6S-116 of the Administration Building, located at 115 S. Ludlow St., Dayton, OH 45402.
The purpose of the meeting is to allow the Board to vote on recommendations from the superintendent and/or treasurer.
The media is being advised of this meeting in compliance with the Ohio Sunshine Law.
Robert Walker, D.Min.
Dayton Board of Education
This is after they acknowledged yet ignored about 60 people in Dunbar blue who piled into the 6th floor board room tonight, to be seen but not heard by the children in charge of the Dayton Public Schools.
The board, less Dr. Adil Baguirov, took great pains to explain that they were just there to go into executive session, and then went for yet another 2.5 hour marathon.
So here’s some things to think about: no one realized that they hired a replacement football coach at Dunbar on Saturday. Yep, a Mr. James Jacking. On the HR recommendations that were passed by 4 members with Sheila Taylor abstaining.
Check page 2. They hired Jacking, not lacking.
Mr. James LACKING, was kinda surprised when he found out first from a reporter that he may have the job. Not only that, he’s willing to step down if the board ever holds a revote to hire Darran Powell back.
Powell has his petitions with over 1500 signatures turned in. Somehow, it hasn’t connected with the board or with Rhonda Corr that 1,500 signatures in 3 days is a hint that they don’t have the political capital to win. But, when you have an administration as tone deaf as this one, maybe they just have to wait for the bomb to go off.
There was good news for the district today.
Rhonda Corr made an announcement about preliminary state testing results as part of the preamble to the executive session. She claims all scores went up and that the final numbers will be even better. The board was just slightly happy, wondering if the 60 Wolverines were going to eat them for lunch was higher on their list of priorities.
The ruling by Judge Dankof on the notification process used by DPS board- click to download PDF
The other news was that Judge Steven Dankof actually gave them a seal of approval for their insane meeting practices by tossing out the lawsuit by former treasurer Craig Jones. Dankof took at face value the arguments for the legitimacy of their poor notification actions and confused votes and said the board didn’t do anything wrong in firing Jones and Ward back in Feb of 2016. Nevermind the board definitely tightened up their notification emails to comply properly after (which should tell you something).
For the record, the vote was 4-1 and Ron Lee wasn’t there and said he would have also voted to fire. Do I care who was the one no vote? Do the rest of us? Not really, because this whole thing has gone from bad to worse since. You can read the ruling here.
How many meetings a week can this board hold?
How long will the public stand for this nonsense?
One things for sure, someone who didn’t think much of Rhonda’s hand picked Chief Academic Officer who just quit found this blog and made it clear that Dr. Markay Winston wasn’t any less controversial than her former benefactor Corr. This article about Markay’s obstructions in court proceedings against the now imprisoned former Superintendent of Chicago Public Schools, Barbara Byrd Bennet, should have set off warning bells for the DPS board long before they even had Corr in to interview.
Is this mess the best we can do? Isn’t it time to just start with a completely new board, and a superintendent that actually knows who she hired for head coach of the winningest football program in the city?
In accordance with Section 3313.16 of the Ohio Revised Code and File: BD of the Handbook of Policies, Rules & Regulations of the Board, I hereby call for a special meeting of the Board of Education of the Dayton City School District, Montgomery County, Ohio, to be held on Tuesday, June 27, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. in room 6S-116 of the Administration Building, located at 115 S. Ludlow St., Dayton, OH 45402.
Immediately after convening, the board is expected to go into executive session to discuss matters of personnel. In addition, the board may choose to vote on recommendations from the superintendent and/or treasurer.
The media is being advised of this meeting in compliance with the Ohio Sunshine Law.
Robert Walker, D.Min.
Dayton Board of Education
Screenshot at 7:25 am on Monday July 26 2017 of DPS board docs
While it all sounds legit, for the meeting to be legit, the agenda should be published at least 48 hours before the meeting so the public can review it, contact board members, file comments (something that isn’t done), etc. That means last night, Sunday, at 5:30 was the cutoff.
This morning. No agenda at 7:25.
If they need this many meetings, if they can’t post agendas, if they can’t do what they were supposed to do in their June Retreat (evaluate the Superintendent), if they can’t vote because “they missed too many meetings” or if they “can’t vote” because they are trying to hide things that should have been done in a business meeting at the “retreat” 4 days later- the simple answer is- they shouldn’t be trusted to be our school board.
The board policy has a “48 hour rule” for a reason. That this board and superintendent can’t even have a 2 day planning horizon is criminal.
It’s time for them all to be thrown out.
From page 118 of their own policy manual:
AGENDA PREPARATION AND DISSEMINATION
The Superintendent, working with the Board President, coordinates the agenda for all Board meetings. Items of business may be suggested by a Board member, staff member or citizen of the District. The agenda may allow suitable time for remarks by the public who wish to speak briefly before the Board.
The agenda, together with supporting materials, are distributed to Board members sufficiently in advance of meetings to permit them to give items of business advance consideration.
The agenda is made available to the press, staff representatives and others upon request.
Dissemination of Resolutions and Recommendations
All proposed resolutions and recommendations for Board consideration and action are submitted in writing to each Board member not less than 48 hours before the Board meeting.
In an emergency or extreme urgency, this requirement may be waived at any meeting by majority action of a quorum of the Board.
[Adoption date: August 5, 2009]
“Mr Esrati, we’re going to ask you to leave” said Dr. Robert Walker, president of the Dayton Board of Education at their “Board Retreat” on Saturday, June 24, 2017.
At issue was the board taking what was presented as a critical time sensitive vote, on a report from the Treasurer, Hiwot Abraha, a mere 4 days after their regularly scheduled “business meeting” on Tuesday.
Did Abraha have no clue that this was critical on Tuesday, or was this purely an attempt to slide things through without the normal scrutiny and public comment allowed at the regular board business meeting? Me thinks the latter, which is why I spoke up, and invited my ejection.
From the agenda on Board Docs:
“May I have a motion to approve the following items:
C) Purchase Requisitions
D) Resolution: Official Certificate of Estimated Resources
E) Resolution: Original Appropriation Measure for Fiscal Yer (sic) 2018”
“Subject Resolution: Original Appropriation Measure for Fiscal Year 2018
I recommend that the Board approve the following resolution for the Original Appropriation Measure for Fiscal Year 2017.
Section 5705.38 of the Ohio Revised Code requires the adoption and/or amendment of an Annual Appropriation Measure.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Board of Education of the Dayton City School District the following sums be and hereby are set aside and appropriated as indicated in the 2017-18 Original Appropriations.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, pursuant to Section 5705.412 of the Ohio Revised Code, the the Board President, Superintendent, and Treasurer certify that the Dayton City School District has in effect for the fiscal year 2018 the authorization to levy taxes, which, when combined with the estimated revenue from all other sources available to the district at the time of certification, are sufficient to provide the operating revenues necessary to enable the district to maintain all personnel and programs for all the days set forth in its adopted school calendar for the current fiscal year.”
Lee and Baguirov were absent, and Sheila Taylor abstained from this vote (using good judgement) as Walker, Lacey, Rountree and McManus voted just like this wasn’t anything different than normal Standard Operating Procedure. According to the records on Board Docs, Taylor also abstained from the Superintendents recommendations.
EVALUATION OF SCHOOL BOARD OPERATIONAL PROCEDURES
The Board plans and carries through an annual appraisal of its functioning as a board. Evaluation is held in the month of June, or during a regularly scheduled Board retreat, with no other items on the agenda with all Board members present. This appraisal considers the broad realm of relationships and activities inherent in Board responsibilities.
PDF- click to enlarge or download
This wasn’t the only issue that they were going to vote on, nor was it the only thing the public should be informed of. An odd RESOLUTION TO AUCTION PROPERTY AND GOODS was included, without any specifics being given. This could be anything from extra desks to the real estate on Wyoming near MVH and UD, the site of the former Patterson Kennedy Elementary School, that this blog featured in my post and video “Dirty Deals Done Dirt Cheap”. Of course, I wasn’t still at the meeting when this was discussed, but how can a board vote to approve something as unspecific as this? And, why on a Saturday morning retreat, instead of the business meeting?
There is no other school board that meets as often, as long, or does more to disrespect the public than this one. The sheer number of meetings and length, force people who want to be involved or serve as checks and balances to go to ridiculous measures to track and follow. The Open Meetings laws of Ohio, known as the Sunshine Laws, unfortunately don’t even have a provision to stop this kind of obfuscation of the public business, but maybe they should.
While I stated they are breaking the law, it barely matters, because the Sunshine laws have the least amount of teeth for punishing misbehaving public bodies that could possibly written into law. Think of them more like a 20 year old cat with one tooth- not a tiger. However, one parent was so incensed by Saturdays actions that she’s ready to file a pro se action on Monday and is looking for affected citizens to join her in the suit. She’s had legal help in formulating the argument. Please message [email protected]if you want to participate.
Also note, seven more teacher resignations since Tuesday. How much longer is this board going to whistle Dixie while a contract isn’t put in place? Some observers have said that this boards actions, from the firing of former Superintendent Lori Ward, Treasurer Craig Jones, the hiring of the outsider, rookie, Rhonda Corr, to the strife of the RIF, to the payoff of David Lawrence, to the failure to negotiate, is all part of a plan to decimate the district and force State takeover- giving the Republicans in the State House their petri dish for replacing regulated public schools with charters city wide- much like what happened in New Orleans after Katrina. It’s a Betsy DeVos wet dream come true.
In other business, why is Ron Lee, with being absent so many times that he couldn’t vote on the Dunbar Coaching choice, still allowed on the board? The State Law, is 90 days, however, in a normal school board, this could mean 2 meetings in a row, however since Dayton meets almost 2x a week, maybe there should be a tougher standard. Of course, this part of the law is what would be used to send Dr. Adil Baguirov off the board for non-residency, something this board refuses to do.
The Darran Powell Question
From the board policy document pg 120:
No question decided by the Board will be raised again during the same school year except upon a motion to reconsider, made at the same or next Board meeting. Only a member who voted with the prevailing side may move to reconsider a motion that has been adopted. A majority vote of the entire membership is necessary to reconsider an action that has been taken.
Other than the new school year may technically start in July, by having this rushed meeting, and it not coming up, there can be no revote now on the hiring of Dunbar football coach Darran Powell, who was not hired last Tuesday. His petition for a revote now has 1547 signatures and 399 comments.
Final word: At least a few board members are beginning to see the sheer insanity of this “organization” that can’t get its business done according to schedule. Watch for future developments.
The kind of information that should be given at every meeting.
Also note, much of the “Superintendents presentation” – which has information of the type that should be given at EVERY meeting, shows some troublesome stats- like declining graduation rates, poor 3rd grade reading scores, and horrible enrollment stats for the coming year, despite the best efforts of The Ohlmann Group with their premium priced contract.
In about a day and a half, an online petition has gathered 1500 signatures asking the Dayton Public Schools Board of Education to reconsider the hiring of Dunbar football coach Darran Powell.
On June 20, 2017, The results (3-2) of the Dayton Board of Education’s vote on Line Item 91 were:YES-Walker, Roundtree, McManus Abstain-Lee (Citing Lack of Information) NO-Taylor, Lacey ABSENT-Baguirov
The Dunbar community would like for the Dayton Board of Education to consider re-voting on Line Item 91 (Darran Powell for Dunbar’s Head Football Coach); motioned on June 20, 2017.
1)The season is fast approaching (5 ½ weeks) and the program will not adapt to leadership change within a short amount of time.
2) Leadership change will cause a chaotic mass exodus of student-athletes from the Dayton Public School system.
3) This is a direct contrast of the desires of the Dunbar family and community.
4) Being that football is an all year endeavor, the non-paid duties of Darran Powell have failed to be considered.
Yes, there are students signing the petition- not just voters, but, I’m going to guess that the 1500 signers, plus about 800 teachers, will be glad to circulate petitions to voters to ask a judge to remove this entire three ring circus, and let Dayton Public Schools get back to education instead of entertainment as the greatest ($h!t) show on earth.
Read some of the comments, I’m sure you’ll realize that when it comes to setting examples for young people, Coach Powell has done more than the Superintendent, or any of the members of this Board of Education.
The DPS board meeting was not streamed. And the end of my video will be the camera locked in, wide- because I was asked to leave by security.
Dr. Adil Baguirov was excused at the beginning because he was “traveling.” It’s probably the reason the tech steering committee meeting was cancelled today as well. Sadly, no staff is capable of running that meeting, because, well, there is no IT director for the district right now thanks to the Fall RIF.
This was a night for speeches. Board Member McManus was scheduled to speak before public comments- for a special presentation, but at the last minute, it was moved to after public comment. Yet, Joe Lacey got to make an unscheduled ramble about how important teachers are- because the house was once again packed with them- all wondering why contract negotiations were at a standstill.
Former DPS teacher “Mr. U”- Brian Urquhart got up and had the audience joining in – “it doesn’t buy the groceries, it doesn’t pay the bills” to address the lack of a contract.
I got up and apologized for interrupting the board meeting last week- because they couldn’t stay on topic, asking why teachers had lesson plans, and the board didn’t. I gave them an “F” and called for the board to get an independent parliamentarian to guide them- pointing out “new business” is for voting items- not for speeches, and that the superintendent is who they address- not staff. I questioned how 4 Stivers teachers are resigning- as well as her Chief Academic Officer- and how they can spend so much on legal fees- but still not have a negotiating team at the table.
One teacher in attendance wrote this on Facebook “Get out the BBQ sauce, because David Esrati just grilled the DPSBOE.”
But, the more interesting part was the McManus ramble of our refined Southern Gentleman- who had had enough of Board members working in the dark. He asked for a clear strategic plan, and regular updates on how we’re moving toward goals. It took a while, but it was clear by the end that he felt bamboozled by the Superintendent and the Treasurer on both the RIF and the Marketing Contract fiasco. It wasn’t fire and brimstone of one of our black ministers, but, for John McManus it was an epic earful. Considering at least 3 and probably 4 seats will be occupied by someone else come January, it was pretty clear that this superintendent better learn how to inform the board better or she may be gone.
Then came the HR vote. That four teachers were leaving Stivers was unheard of. It wasn’t mentioned. What did happen is Joe Lacey asked for line 91 to be voted separately. Since Board Doc’s is worthless on mobile- I had to ask Dayton Daily news reporter Jeremy Kelley to confirm what I thought line 91 was – and it was the supplemental contract to hire Darren Powell as coach of the Dunbar football team for next fall. The role was called, Ron Lee abstained, later blaming it on his many absences. McManus, Walker, Rountree voted yes, Lacey voted no and then Taylor voted no. Lacey chimed in “it takes 4 to hire” and just like that- Darren Powell was publicly crucified for a whole bunch of peoples failures- including district Athletic Director LaMark Baker, who according to the Ohio High School Athletic Association was the primary party in the Dunbar/Belmont fiasco. The same Mark Baker that got a rushed 2 year contract a few months ago- before the ink on the reports was dry.
That they hired Belmont Coach/AD Earl White back to both positions just previous once again points to the failures of the DPS HR Department. The jobs were all specifically posted to exclude that possibility, making the entire athletic contract awards process tainted. Is it any wonder the board just allocated a quarter of a million plus for outside legal counsel. They know they’re going to need it.
After the vote, I got in trouble. I asked, “So who is going to be the Dunbar football coach?” Legitimate question. No response had me asking again. Because, well, you can’t have a team without a coach, and practice is NOW. This is a question the Superintendent should have had an answer for. This is proof that this board doesn’t respect their Superintendent by hanging her out to dry on her choice for head coach.
Many believe this entire mess was the final straw for Dr. Markay Winston, and why she resigned.
Needless to say, no one answered. But Rountree made a speech, Lee made excuses, and, if Walker said anything, I don’t remember it- possibly because I was talking on Mr. U’s phone to coach Powell’s father- outside the room.
Lawsuits may come, another coach may be named, but, all that vote did was screw the kids at Dunbar out of a coach, and leave the program in the midst of Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt. Exactly the wrong three words you want to hear when running anything, unless your goal is to run it into the ground.