There seems to be some questioning of my report that Dr. Libby Lolli sent out an SRO to the schools with a letter to sign in support of her contract renewal. Not only is this really wrong, in that letters from principals might be valid if asked for by the school board- and should be written individually under the principal own volition- but, also- that’s not part of an Security Resources Officers job duties- and the idea of a paramilitary person showing up from your boss with a letter to sign- is sort of like sending the thought police. Note, SRO’s may also be coming to help escort you out of the building if Lolli was to fire you (a proper use of their position.)
To this- I had confirmation. What I need now- is if you work in the Elementary buildings- tell me which SRO came and what time on Tuesday- so I can properly PRR the video footage to prove this allegation. Also- if you are a signatory- and want to privately state that you would never have signed it- I’ll keep your name out of it- but will publish your positions. Please email me- not from a computer or phone using the DPS network- or your work email- your position, which school, and statement to [email protected] (note- don’t use your phone at work- unless you’ve shut wifi-off first.
Then there is this:
On Tuesday night, Dayton’s school board promoted academic coordinator Tonya Ray to interim chief. Ray previously led Bellbrook schools’ special education department.The changes the state recommends should have been made years ago, Lolli said.
Did anyone check how Tonya Ray’s tenure at Bellbrook went? Word is, there were a bunch of people who thought her performance there was less than stellar. This wouldn’t be the first questionable hire from another district. Lolli has zero HR skills, and has massively failed, as has the board in the past to vet candidates before hire. The person she’s filling in for- Dr. Angela Nichols- had similar skeletons in her closet. The board received warnings from Bellbrook parents – and ignored them as well. The turnover in administration under Lolli has been nothing short of epic. If you are a sports fan- the closest analogy I can think of is the trainwreck of the NY Knicks, who despite bringing in some incredible talent- can’t manage to ever put together a winning record of late.
And, for the record, this was the earliest the DPS board has renewed a superintendent in a long time. Usually, you wait until March to renew, since the contracts flip in June. And isn’t it nice that Nan Whaley piped in with her support- didn’t she used to say she wasn’t involved in the running of the School Board (until she backed the 4 candidates- and made sure the City Managers hubby had a job there).
To all of you DPS staffers who have stuck through this double calamity of Lolli and Covid- thank you. When you say you are doing it for the kids- you actually mean it. I respect the risks you take and your commitment to your profession immensely.
I am reposting what Mario Gallin wrote about this. I assure you- I will prove without a doubt with the video evidence if I get responses- that the SRO circulated letter happened:
I left the Board meeting after all the comments on the contract extension to watch the news. I left that mess to hear that 10 National Guard soldiers who were assigned to protect the next President during the inauguration were removed because a deeper FBI check found they had ties to extremist right wing organizations. Just like the ones who tried to take over our government two weeks ago. Our problems are not just local.In a previous post, I called on the Board to cite the reasons that they felt warranted an extension of the Superintendent’s contract. I think it is time to be specific and data driven. I wanted them to cite their advisors. Who, besides themselves, thinks this is going well?So here is what they came up with – the Mayor of Dayton, a coach, a Security Resource Officer, and the labor union leadership for the region. Their comments were lovely, but mostly centered on her willingness to talk with them, which I understand is a refreshing change of pace.Actual DPS union leadership, with the exception of the Dayton Education Association was, was absent. The DEA president’s comments were at minimum non-committal. The examples he put forward of recent events would not lead anyone to think his membership was supportive.There was a big kerfuffle yesterday regarding a letter of support by DPS principals. Mr. Ertsgaard, principal of Ruskin Elementary, presented the letter as their representative. He clarified that it was an initiative by the elementary principals, not anything that was solicited by Dr. Lolli. I was relieved that the rumors were not true. I do think it speaks to the climate in the District that so many people thought this was a possibility. Still uncomfortable with the notion, not disavowed, that an SRO went from school to school to collect signatures.According to his opening remarks, and I paraphrase, elementary school principals are a close knit group in constant, if not daily, communication with each other. The letter which he read into the record was a solid endorsement of the Superintendent to date and a request for her continued leadership. Among other things, they admire her knowledge of curriculum and implementation. They feel that they have been given the tools they need to move the district forward. They made the case that the groundwork for academic success has been laid and just needs time to fully develop to maturity. They are pleased with how she has aligned curriculum direction, professional development, educational resources and the cultivation of community partnerships. You can hear the full testimony at the 1 hour 56 minute mark of the video.It was signed by 15 of the 16 elementary principals. I am not 100% sure that all the signatories did so with a happy heart, but until I hear specifically otherwise I will take this at face value.The contract extension was approved unanimously. There is a moment between when the motion is made and seconded and the vote, when discussion is possible. Honestly, I would have felt better if there were an infusion of positive comments, a litany of accomplishments, an acknowledgement of better days to come, but there was none of this. The only person to comment was Will Smith who basically said this year was rough, other years have been rough and there is still a lot more work to do.Dr. Lolli did speak at the end of the meeting and it was there that she went over the things she has done since she arrived at DPS. You can watch it on the YouTube video at 2 hours 26 minutes in.There are many who disagree with this contract extension. It is the last in a long line of decisions that have been opposed by various people. But, like the election results, it is a done deal. Time to move forward. The way to effect change at this point is to change the elected leadership. Be the change you want to see. Potential school board candidates need to file their petitions to run by August 4, just over 6 months from now.
The day before our country gets rid of one lunatic sociopath in charge, our DPS board, retains their own. At least our country can sleep easier.