Superintendent Green’s Contract: Giving Away The Farm?

Stephen-GreenAfter seeing the “overview” of Superintendent Green’s contract, we were curious to see what he was really being paid. See below for Year One and Year Two — with a whole lot of blank spaces.  Who is so fiscally irresponsible as to approve and then sign a contract with blank spaces?

RSGreen Contract Years One and Two_8.5×14 Page

NOTE: The contract attachment (above in PDF) may be printed on a single 8-1/2 x 14 page. The attachment in Excel 2010 is also available via email from DSW on request.  

In addition to filling in the blanks with dollar amounts (or percentage of salary — annual or monthly) we also have a few questions.  We have asked for answers.  We think you will agree that these questions are entirely appropriate given the following facts:

We are paying top dollar for a superintendent (1)who comes from an unaccredited system 1/7th the size of DeKalb County Schools where he was (2)unable to meet academic achievement goals while (3)spending about $20,000 per student and (4) who misled the Kansas City taxpayers about seeing the K.C. job through even as he was (5)looking for another job in another city.

Plus, DeKalb County Schools already spends so much money on the bloated Palace that DCS is financially unable to: (6)pay teachers a competitive salary; (7)make teachers whole regarding lost contributions to the Tax Sheltered Annuity and (8)the resulting loss of earned interest; (9)provide textbooks and technology for all students; (10)properly supply classrooms, teachers and students; (11)provide substitute teachers as needed; (12)provide well-deserved and promised raises to ALL certified personnel, including media specialists (who teach every student); and (13)reimburse the federal government for mis-used Title 1 funds (in 2014) thereby continuing to shortchange students who require Title 1 services since all federal funding — at least for Title 1 — has stopped.

Here are the questions:

[1]  What is the dollar amount or percentage of salary for each item (green cells) in the Standard Benefits Package for 12-month Certified Administrative Employees?

[2]  What other insurance is provided to 12-month Certified Administrative Employees? Social Security?  Supplemental Retirement Plan?  Tax-Sheltered Annuity?  How much is this additional insurance?

[3]  Green should pay his own share of TRS — just like teachers do.  Will DCS be paying anything additional to “buy” credits for the years Green has worked elsewhere in education?

[4]  How much paid leave (not vacation) is part of this contract?

[5]  How much unpaid leave is part of this contract?  At what point does unpaid leave become job abandonment? (Remembering Cheryl Atkinson’s antics …)

[6]  Why?  We don’t see the point of this expense except to add to Green’s already overblown compensation.

[7]  What is the difference between the Life Insurance that is part of the Standard Benefits Package for 12-month Certified Administrative Employees and this term life insurance?  Isn’t this duplicating what is already in the Standard Benefits Package for 12-month Certified Administrative Employees?  Why is it included?

[8]  The contract reads, “Shall previously been budgeted for as general expenses of the Superintendent.”  How much is that?  What does it cover?  How much are the membership dues for the Georgia Superintendents Association and the American Association of School Administrators?  Does reimbursement require receipts?

[9]  Why?  Have threats been made?  If so, involve the DeKalb County police.  What constitutes security, anyhow?  Installing an alarm system in the Superintendent’s house? Full-time security person as the Superintendent’s driver (like Atkinson had)?  Round-the-clock security at home and at the Palace?

[10]  According to the contract this equipment remains the property of DeKalb County Schools.  Will the Superintendent be financially responsible for damage, destruction and loss — and replacement? (Also remembering Cheryl Atkinson’s antics …)

[11]  How is this different from the Tax Sheltered Annuity taken away from teachers? Why is it provided to a new superintendent, who is new to DeKalb County Schools, when teachers are denied?  Actually, we have heard rumors that senior administrative employees at the Palace still receive Tax Sheltered Annuity contributions.

[12]  Why are our tax dollars paying for this when the Affordable Care Act makes reasonably-priced health care available for just such a situation.  What other unintended costs might we incur by extending Missouri-based health insurance for a month?  For example, suppose Green’s current plan allows insured healthcare treatment in Missouri only.  Who pays for transportation and lodging if Green or his wife need healthcare during June?

[13]  Not included in the contract:  Who is paying for Green’s relocation expenses such as packing and moving costs, real estate fees, house-hunting travel between Kansas City and the Atlanta area, etc?  DeKalb County Schools?  How much will those costs be? They are not in the contract.

[14]  Not included in the contract:  Will Green be asked to live in DeKalb County where his success — or lack of — will have a serious effect on home values (including his home value), business relocation and job opportunities?  This, also, is not in the contract.  Why?

Do you have any other questions?  Ask your board member and let us know, too. We will add your questions to the list and track the answers you get when you share them with us.  Meanwhile, you might find it eye-opening to compare Green’s salary and perks with your own paycheck report.

 

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Hosting a dialogue among parents, educators and community members focused on improving our schools and providing a quality, equitable education for each of our nearly 100,000 students. ~ "ipsa scientia potestas est" ~ "Knowledge itself is power"
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33 Responses to Superintendent Green’s Contract: Giving Away The Farm?

  1. dsw2contributor says:

    Superintendent Green needs the money because he has grandkids to spoil! 🙂

  2. Concerned Parent says:

    What is the “Expense Allotment (No receipts required.)” money in the amount of $31,200 for? Just ‘walking around’ money and no receipts required? Is that normal?

  3. DavidS says:

    I have to say, I’m blown away by this. I guess the posted picture of Dr. Green was taken right after he saw this compensation package.
    But a contract is an agreement between two parties. What, exactly, are we getting for our new $1200/day superintendent? I recall reading that he had some performance incentives in his contract with Kansas City. Wouldn’t that be appropriate here? Has the Board gotten any assurances that DeKalb students will be performing better a year from now? It shouldn’t be too hard to put some performance milestones together to base a bonus on. I mean, what is the point of a $15,000 bonus just for sucking in air for a year?

  4. former dekalb parent says:

    FWIW– as usual, the powers that be and that work in a nice air conditioned offices have started their “summer” calendar with the workers, grounds, janitors, carpenters, mechanics, etc to begin working 4 – 10 hour days and off on Fridays. I am sure the palace has NEVER pulled a 10 hour day OUTSIDE in Georgia in the summer or working in a hot kitchen or machine shop. I feel for our poor maintenance staff and all they will have to do over the summer. And most of them still have furlough days as they are 12 month employees.

  5. @ former dekalb parent We have always been in favor of the Palace People (including the Superintendent and his top flunkies) working in the same conditions as found on any given day (including summers) in any DCS school. We believe that may speed up repairs. It also might discourage the rumored practice of trading brand new equipment for used-plus-a-kick-back.

    Classrooms are where the real work of education takes place and teachers are DeKalb County Schools’ most important employees, though the Palace People treat our teachers like Cinderellas. Students and their tax-paying parents are DCS’ most important clients who can — and do — chose to go somewhere else for education.

    We are pretty sure that NO one in the Palace has pulled a 10-hour day. Ever. Period. They are all 12-month employees, but have you noticed how the Palace shuts down for school breaks and holidays? And they still manage to take all of their vacation days. Working hard? No. Hardly working.

  6. Weary Worker says:

    In my limited experience of the central office – people seldom answer the phone and when I was in the building very few people were in their cubicles. In the old admin building it was easier to see that no one was doing their, maybe this is why they wanted more secure digs.

  7. “We are pretty sure that NO one in the Palace has pulled a 10-hour day. Ever. ”

    You are very, very wrong, DSW.

  8. Documentation, please.

  9. howdy1942 says:

    One question that I have is how much Michael Thurmond’s “going-away” present will be – does anyone know? Or, on June 30, 2015, does he just go home, not draw any more compensation of any type, and not come back to work on July 1, 2015?

    We paid his predecessor full salary for six months. We are still paying Ramona Tyson. And we are paying Crawford Lewis his retirement (at least). Now we have moved Dr. Kathy Howe to a “make work” position, probably at the same salary, and promoted someone to take her place. We have built a bigger bureaucracy while having the audacity to ask the taxpayers for more money. And, by the way, I just got my tax assessment – a 13.4% increase over last year! Again, if I had my way, I would clean out that palace, give our teachers a bigger raise, eliminate (not rebid) any contract to pay any outside contractor for provide teachers from wherever, sell administrator cars and pay them mileage rates, end any contract with any outside party to rent “classroom” space and that would include any churches, sharply reduce administrator travel budgets, put the teacher in charge of the classroom and hold them accountable for results, and get all those “support” personnel out of the teachers’ way. Also, there would be far fewer lawyers getting paid by the DCSS. We would start running this school system like a business that would focus on listening to and serving our clients – students, parents, and taxpayers.

    Maybe, someday!

  10. The Wiz says:

    I hope this guy does something about the out of control testing. Watch this for testing insight you won’t want to believe. It’s funny but at the same time, it’s so true.

  11. The Wiz says:

    News Flash from The About To Be The City of Lavista Hills:

    The old Briarcliff HS building is going to be reused by DCSS starting in 2017 as part of the Cross Keys cluster. Details to follow. The International School currently housed a the old Kittredge ES building will move over there, and the Kittredge building will become an ES again. No announcements about the names of the schools yet. More to come.

  12. Proud teacher of all students says:

    I am sooooooo tired of that school only referred to as “the old Briarcliff HS”. The number of Dekalb graduates that graduated from Open Campus High and currently Elizabeth Andrews High, over the many years, is nothing to ignore. We have been there for hundreds, if not thousands, to enable them to graduate and become contributing citizens to society.

  13. concerned citizen says:

    Does anyone know what administrative moves have been made? I think Thurmond was going to do some rewarding and some punishment on June 1.

  14. dekalbteacher says:

    dsw2contributor,

    Sorry but there are more things wrong with the central office than this hyperbolic claim.

    As a mother at a board meeting asked, “Have you ever seen the central office host a bake sale for its _________ (equipment, resources, etc…)?”

    Have you ever seen central office employees in school buildings during pre-planning? If Dr. Green is serious about students, I hope he’ll have all central office employees supposedly providing “support” and involved with “instruction” helping teachers prepare their classrooms and lessons as well as helping school buildings with registration, etc…

    How many central office employees work after their designated hours? How many have to do their jobs and use their personal equipment without compensation (using home computers and printers when the school district provides such limited resources, grading and planning after hours, conferencing with students and parents when convenient for them)?

    Have you ever wondered why the very office that exists to support schools holds banking hours? But even banks have Saturday morning hours and (usually) efficient on-line and telephone customer service. Why in the world doesn’t the central office have these longer hours, once a week or once a month, during the school year? We teachers have conference nights and extra-curricular activities. Shouldn’t central office employees, at least the ones making as much and more than we teachers do, be offering similar support?

    If you’ve received the wrong pay, gotten incorrect information about your salary schedule, received incorrect information about certification renewal or working hours or sick leave, emailed multiple times about professional development or certification or health information to receive no reply, then maybe you would understand the frustration.

    Sure, there are people at the central office who work and work hard. We know that.

    I’m more concerned about the culture of “dysfunction and mismanagement” that even Thurmond recognized but somehow ignored. How many more employees don’t really have much work to do, and are perfectly fine collecting nice paychecks with this set-up? Or how many are working (sometimes hard) because of the incompetence and laziness of others? How many students are denied services or opportunities because people at the central office couldn’t sort things out or figure out how to do things like spend Title 1 monies correctly or apply new school district designations?

    Look at the working conditions in many of our students’ “academic learning environments.” Then look at the working conditions at the central office. What can you say, really?

  15. @Howdy1942 “Maybe, someday” is not enough — not even nearly close to being in the same ballpark as enough. Our children are not a science experiment. Every year of decent education that any child loses due to the self-centered corruption in the Palace is a year that child will never get back. We must stop shrugging our shoulders and saying, “Oh well. Someday.”

    Not you specifically, Howdy. We think that you — hopefully — meant “Maybe, someday” in a sarcastic manner. We know that you have written very good, on target, well-documented, hold-their-feet-to-the-fire posts. But anyone new to DeKalb County Schools (which is likely to be the majority of parents and many teachers) may think DeKalb’s problems are solvable. They are not. Anyone new to DeKalb County Schools may think that publicly shaming and calling attention to the blatant misdeeds and illegal actions of the Palace people will cause them to do the right things for our students. It won’t. That works only with honest people who are trying to do right and/or people who know without a doubt that there will be punishment — losing their job and/or prison time — for their misdeeds

    There is only one way to provide the education all of our children so desperately need — and there is plenty of money to do it, too. That one way is to allow city-based independent school systems. That will force what is left of the DeKalb County School System to shrink to a manageable size and a manageable amount of money that won’t be a magnet for corruption.

  16. September says:

    @The Wiz. Thanks for the thought provoking video. I watched it to the end. Too bad so much of it is true. It is sad that we deny a good student access to advanced classes because of a test score. The other thing that bothered me was the teacher who received a lower evaluation because a student, who earned a prefect test score didn’t meet the testing target score.

    At the school board meeting last night a teacher talked about the SLO tests that are used to assess student learning. Ten test questions in each subject at assess a student’s learning for the year! The scores are used in the teacher evaluation process.

  17. former dekalb parent says:

    for the love of God, why is Ramona Tyson still on staff? Please someone put her name at the TOP of the list of people that need to GO!

  18. Weary Worker says:

    Has anyone ever suggested renting a billboard across from the palace to bring attention to the waste and mismanagement that that goes on there?

  19. Weary Worker says:

    I did a street view the closest billboard is on Mt. Ind just north of the St. Mt. Freeway. There is also one at Ponce de Leon and Hairston but nothing directly across from the palace. This could be a good use of crowdfunding.

  20. On their website, CBS-46 has posted an informative article that the CBS affiliate in Kansas City did last year. It’s titled “KCPS superintendent defends lavish high-end dining” and was dated Jul 21, 2014 3:15 PM EDT:
    http://www.cbs46.com/story/26072404/kcps-superintendent-defends-lavish-high-end-dining

    An excerpt:

    KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) – Every month, the Kansas City School Board pays the bill for Superintendent Stephen Green’s district credit card….. KCTV5 reviewed receipts for nearly two years of transactions to see the district card used at high-end restaurants in Kansas City including Brio, Classic Cup, Capital Grill and Houston’s. But hands down the most meals paid for with taxpayer dollars were spent at Bristol, which is a short walk from the district’s downtown headquarters.

    “The crazy thing to me is you have 23 visits to Bristol, with over $2,000 in charges,” said James V. Shuls, director of education policy at the Show-Me Institute in St. Louis. “A ton of other restaurants people are going to and it seems like nobody is really checking these things.”

    AND

    KCTV5 investigative reporter Eric Chaloux asked Green if it was a reasonable expense to eat at expensive, fancy restaurants with staff, school board and consultants. “Absolutely,” Green said. “I don’t think … I don’t use the term fancy. Bristol, Classic Cup, First Watch, Brio are restaurants that are viable here in this community. We are actually helping those businesses stay viable, so it’s actually recycling taxpayer dollars.”

    The link to the full story:
    http://www.cbs46.com/story/26072404/kcps-superintendent-defends-lavish-high-end-dining

  21. howdy1942 says:

    @DSW – I appreciate your observation and comment. Let me start with you comment about city-based independent schools. I am reluctantly coming around to your conclusion. I still think that approach is a stretch, but one well worth the effort. We have nothing to lose! I strongly supported the Druid Hills effort, still believe that it was a solid proposal, still think that we would have seen some much improved results, think that the model it proposed would have been very appropriate for other communities in Dekalb Count. It did not happen.

    Now to my comment about “Maybe, someday”, I start from the position that change will only come about if and when the residents of Dekalb County vote for change at the school board. Except for Nancy Jester and Pamela Speaks, that board was a disaster. To say that I was underwhelmed by the board appointed by Governor Deal would be an understatement. With the exception of the addition of Stan Jester, this new board is, in my view, no better (if that). The size of the new board was cut from nine to seven and we only needed a majority of four, not five. That was realistic. For whatever reason, 90% of the registered voters in Dekalb County chose not to even vote. If the DCSS is ever going to change, then more than 10% of the voters must choose to vote. I cannot believe that anywhere near the majority of voters in Dekalb County supports this school system. I have been present at too many meetings and heard too many of our residents speak to believe that. In short, we will have change at the Dekalb County School System when our residents go to the polls in overwhelming numbers and vote to change the school board. That’s where it all begins. The superintendent will do whatever this board wants.

    The Atlanta Public School System seems to have gotten its house in order. Look at the process it used to select a superintendent. A straightforward bid to find a selection firm, three finalists, and one selection. Based on what I have heard and read about its choice for a superintendent, things are looking good for the APS. Contrast that with Dekalb. A botched, badly botched, process to select a search firm. One bid, one selection – and it was one of the two firms rejected by the APS. That should have set off all kinds of sirens, whistles, and alarms. So it was not surprising to me that what happened did, in fact, happen. The result is that we have a new superintendent coming from a school district that is not accredited and who is 61 years old (I am older, but then I am not a candidate for superintendent!), who is breaking a commitment to that school district by serving approximately half of his commitment. Based on the comments of John Evans before the school board, I also believe that there was racial bias. There are, however, two positives. First, an insider did not get the job and, second, Michael Thurmond will be gone.

    So, I hope that someday the people who live in Dekalb County will come to the conclusion that enough is enough and vote for change, real change at the school board. Without any real change there, it is hard to imagine much change below. For now, I’m focused on cityhood. That will give us a structure and a foundation for getting the authority to have our own school system. One other possibility is that the State of Georgia will demand change in the Dekalb County School System and use its purse strings to achieve that change. It seems to me that the State, given the overwhelming number of cityhood proposals from Dekalb County brought before it, would sense that something seriously is wrong in Dekalb County and move to fix it. Maybe someday.

  22. concerned citizen says:

    Howdy, so fine! I wish you were the supt. and I’ve said that before. You’ve really got your act together. I agree with you about the process of “selecting” the new supt. and about the lack of credentials he brings. He will soon discover that there is nothing that works in DeKalb, least of all the school system/

  23. Stan Jester says:

    Atlanta Public Schools – Search Process

    Hired and fired PROACT – Atlanta Public Schools fires superintendent search firm
    APS had a Superintendent Search Committee
    APS had only one finalist – Dr. Meria Joel Carstarphen Introduced As Lone APS Superintendent Finalist

  24. Just wondering says:

    I want to share some information. My purpose is not to try and promote the value of one group of employees over the other. It took me a very short time to find the information that I have listed below. I care about DeKalb and hope the best for it, We live in a real world. When other districts are offering things we are not be given,, it is hard not to look at other options.
    There are some wonderful people working in our school system in every capacity. Teachers, para educators, counselors, custodians, bus drivers, school administrators, there are more school based areas than I can name. There are some helpful and kind people at AIC.

    DeKalb must compete with the school system’s around us. I have listed some links to various articles about things being offered by other school systems. DeKalb is important, We do not want to continue to lose our staff members to other school systems.
    Yes, somethings have improved but the focus has to be on the students and retaining high quality staff. Without the money going the right places, that is not going to happen.

    Please check out the information about retirement benefits in Gwinnett County. We get no social security and no TSA.

    Fulton County Schools Technology
    http://www.neighbornewspapers.com/view/full_story/26638479/article-Fulton-Co–school-district-to-give-media-devices-to-students?instance=all

    Teacher raises in Gwinnett
    According to the article, last year teachers averaged a 3.8 percent raise. For the upcoming year 4.38
    http://www.gwinnettdailypost.com/news/2015/mar/24/gwinnett-county-schools-teachers-to-receive-438/

    Gwinnett has extra retirement benefits
    http://www.myajc.com/news/news/double-pensions-boost-retirement-of-gwinnett-educa/nb9zD/#80b6dac0.3570862.73575

    Cobb proposes 4.0 for all employees and adding 100 new teachers.
    http://mdjonline.com/view/full_story/26581991/article-Proposed-Cobb-schools-budget-includes-4–raises–hiring-100-new-teachers-without-raising-taxes–furlough-days?

  25. dsw2contributor says:

    AJC and other outlets are reporting that the FBI is executing a search warrant at 2751 Buford Highway…. which is right next door to 2719 Buford Highway, the office of Butler Wooten Cheeley & Peak LLP, the law firm that Mike Thurmond “was” on leave from (http://www.butlerwooten.com/Attorneys/Michael-Thurmond.shtml).

    So close and yet so far…

  26. Thanks, Howdy! We do agree with you and we are glad that you did not take our previous comments as a criticism of you. They were not.

    We have a policy of not changing anyone’s comment unless specifically requested in an email to do so. So, let us just add in this reply to you that not only did Green break a commitment to the Kansas City School district after assuring stakeholders that he would not leave until the job was finished, Green also was unable to meet the goal of improving student achievement. For only 14,500 students. Spending $20,000 per student. In fact, the academic achievement trend in Kansas City Schools was downward. (See the Excel workbook we prepared and note all of the yellow highlighting showing a downward trend.) Further, based on the Kansas City CBS affiliate’s report, some of that $20,000 per pupil became Green’s “walkin’ around money.”

    All Green needs to do is manage to fog a mirror through June 30, 2017 and not demonstrate or do any of the following:
    O.C.G.A. 20-2-940 (1) Incompetency; (2) Insubordination; (3) Willful neglect of duties; (4) Immorality; (5) Inciting, encouraging, or counseling students to violate any valid state law, municipal ordinance, or policy or rule of the local board of education; (6) To reduce staff due to loss of students or cancellation of programs and due to no fault or performance issue of the teacher, administrator, or other employee. In the event that a teacher, administrator, or other employee is terminated or suspended pursuant to this paragraph, the local unit of administration shall specify in writing to such teacher, administrator, or other employee that the termination or suspension is due to no fault or performance issues of such teacher, administrator, or other employee*; (7) Failure to secure and maintain necessary educational training; or (8) Any other good and sufficient cause**.
    * We have no idea what this paragraph means. It looks like a “Get Out of Jail Free” card.
    ** Defined as: (a) Material breach of his contract with DCS, whether or not intentional; (b) unfitness to instruct or associate with children; or (c) immoral conduct as defined by case law.

    Per Green’s contract, at a minimum, Green will walk away with a $330,000 goodbye gift. Plus probably a new alarm system for his house. Who wrote this contract, anyhow? A first-year law student could do better

  27. sawyerbrown68 says:

    Stan,

    Good lord! We are so distrustful of the Dekalb County Schools office we blame Dekalb for doing exactly what Atlanta did in finding a superintendent. Your post reveals something we are all keen to do. We needed to be fair. Thank you for that.

    I am very glad you have set a more collaborative tone with Dekalb County and are beginning to achieve some good result. Dr. Green is an example.

    This new superintendent seems to be made of more educational, curricular, and school business fabric than the last four supers—Lewis, Tyson, Atkinson, and Thurmond. ( Can somebody tells me what Mrs. Tyson is doing to earn $ 150 000 per year?)

    I strongly caution you to keep a critical eye and demand the current upper staff be held accountable for the last 5-10 years of decay. A new curriculum team will soon notice the curriculum suddenly produced after 15 years and praised at the last school board meeting is paper machay. A majority of your colleagues must demand that Dr. Green rids Dekalb County Schools of the architects of its destruction–Tyson, Beasley, Ramsey and their chief lieutenants.

    Current principals and assistants must also be supported, evaluated, re-trained as necessary, and removed as required. If some were mistakenly appointed in the last 2 or 3 years, these mistakes should be corrected. Georgia laws give administrators no tenure. Atlanta Public Schools is correcting its mistakes right now-if we want to compare.

    Principals and assistants must in turn do exactly the same for their teaching staff during the coming school year. This must be done fairly and not arbitrarily. You can’t expect the same academic results from Shadow Rock Elementary as you have from Montgomery Elementary or expect the same success from Lithonia High School as from Arabia Mountain High School.

    On the superintendent’s contract and compensation, we have a done deal. Let it be! Just be sure not to add any additional benefits than what is on the contract. No free gas: use the expense account! No car insurance: use the expense account! Not one more dime for the term of this contract! I ask my fellow bloggers to give this subject a rest unless Dr. Green tries to extract more benefits. Fighting this contract is useless. It is signed and sealed.

    Stan, I ask your colleagues and you to be more careful with the contracts of Dr. Green’s key appointees.

    Who knows? If hiring Dr. Green turns out to be a smart move, the “conditions” in the Dekalb County School district should improve to such peaks we won’t need to “bribe with mad money” a decent and charismatic superintendent to succeed Dr. Green in 3 to 5 years.

    Sawyer Brown

  28. @sawyerbrown68 You said, “This new superintendent [Green] seems to be made of more educational, curricular, and school business fabric than the last four supers.” That is a very low bar! We see nothing in Green that would lead anyone to your statement. Can you be more specific, please? What have we missed here?

  29. Kim says:

    @The Wiz: I don’t think you have that quite right re: Briarcliff HS/Open Campus, aka Cross Keys graduation site of the past decades. The ISC I understood is being moved to Midway site. The buiilding it empties is on the list of options to relieve Montclair ES and Woodward ES. The former high school site is being CONSIDERED as a wild (I think) option to house more elementary students from the drowning ship that is Cross Keys. In any case, here’s what was presented by Josh Williams in the superintendent’s report: https://youtu.be/p4_RdM0uVVM

    I was surprised the ceiling didn’t collapse down on me as I listened to the DCSD leadership formally acknowledge what i have been trying to get attention for since 2009. It will a very interesting year in Districts 1, 2, and 4 as we try to wrestle with the mess made by our predecessors since 1989.

  30. howdy1942 says:

    I read Don McChesney’s blog (former Dekalb County School Board member replaced by Marshal Orson) and his post makes so much sense. He postulates that Dr. Green was the one candidate on which at least four school board members could agree. Not wanting to have just a majority of board members (that wouldn’t look good), there may well have been 5 or 6 that could vote for him. He (Dr. Green) was likely not the most qualified candidate, but he was the one that could get the most votes. I suspect that Don is closer to the truth.

    The record indicates that the Kansas City School System has declined from around 100,000 students to the present figure of around 18,000 over the past 25 to 30 years. Judges just flat got it about as wrong as they could when they ordered busing and funding solutions for specific school districts while leaving neighboring districts untouched. From my perspective, the order by the Federal Judge who ordered the Dekalb County School System to make the changes that resulted in the majority-to-minority has been far more destructive to the Dekalb County School System than any other single event. The end result of that order was that people who could just moved out of Dekalb County and into other neighboring counties that did not face such an order.

    Don also makes the point that there were at least two much better qualified candidates when Dr. Atkinson ended up being selected. He further points out that she did not even make the final cut, but “surfaced” later. Recall that vote by the board was 6-3 with Don McChesney, Nancy Jester, and Dr. Pam Speaks opposing her selection. I think that those three has great insight and, had that insight been followed, Dekalb County could very well have been spared the sordid events that began during her reign.

    I could carry on the debate as to the number of search firms available to the Atlanta Public School System or the process that it followed. That would be fruitless because I think that Don’s points ring true. As before, the most qualified candidate was likely not selected, but the one upon which the board, with all of its prejudices, could agree. Let’s all hope that we are not having this same conversation two years from now.

  31. Pingback: Updates from the Monday, June 1 Board Meeting | dekalb school watch two

  32. Stan Jester has recently posted an article about Dr. Green ‘Reflecting’ on Kansas City. Read it here >>

    Superintendent Green Reflects Back On Kansas City Schools
    http://factchecker.stanjester.com/2015/06/4391/

    It includes a video interview with Steve Kraske at KCUR-FM – the NPR affiliate station in Kansas City.

    On his focus on curriculum and student achievement

    We began to assess and reallocate resources to the classroom. We focused on students first. We made the sacrifices, we took from some areas that we didn’t think were necessarily directly focused directly on what needed to happen in the classroom. We redid the curriculum. First thing we did, I think it was the Spring of 2012, we brought in a team of 20-25 folks from the state department to do a curricular audit, very much like you do your finances. How much are we aligned to the state standards? Where are there gaps in articulation between one class and the next class? Etcetera, and we just redid the curriculum.

    And so it’s about accountability, it’s about a structure that you implement with fidelity, and you stay with it and we’ve been refining it for the last three years and every year we’ve gotten not just a little better but a lot better. It still needs some work it’s still not a perfect structure. But it’s a structure that is sound and solid, that it can be built upon and enhanced.

    We will see…

  33. News on Dr. Green’s interim replacement —

    KCPS taps Allan Tunis as interim superintendent

    KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) –

    Kansas City Public Schools has chosen Chief Financial Officer Allan Tunis to serve as interim superintendent, but this selection has sparked outcry among some black civil rights groups.

    The school board voted to approve Tunis’ temporary appointment while in executive session during its meeting Wednesday night.

    Tunis will serve as the KCPS chief executive while the board conducts its nationwide search for a permanent replacement. That process is expected to be quite lengthy and involve community meetings.

    Superintendent Stephen Green’s last day on the books is June 30. He announced last month that he was leaving the district after almost four years to take the superintendent’s post at DeKalb County School District in Georgia.

    The board said they picked Tunis with the expectation that he will continue the programs, policies and approach established by Green, according to school board Chairman Jon Hile.

    “Having Mr. Tunis at the helm of KCPS will allow us to continue on our path to full state accreditation and beyond while we search for our new, permanent leader,” Hile said in a statement. “We are confident that Mr. Tunis and the entire KCPS leadership team will ensure that great teaching and learning happens uninterrupted in our classrooms during this transition.”

    Civil rights groups including the Urban Summit, Freedom Inc. and the Urban League of Greater Kansas City are highly critical of the appointment. Tunis’ classroom experience occurred in the suburban Park Hill School District.

    The five groups who signed a letter said Tunis has “a proven track record of engaging in racist, bigoted and exclusionary practices.”

    Clinton Adams, education chair for the Urban Summit, declined to provide specifics this week, saying it was a strategic and tactical decision to delay releasing details of the accusations.

    Some African-American parents told KCTV5 that they believe the decision was rushed, short sighted and was the wrong one.

    Hile said the process was not rushed, and declined comment on the allegations by the civil rights groups. He said Tunis played a key role in helping Green create an atmosphere of achievement and success as the district averted a state takeover and regained provisional accreditation.

    “He has literally been at Dr. Green’s side for all of that,” Hile said. “He has helped Dr. Green build a system of achievement and success throughout our school district.”

    Read more: http://www.kctv5.com/story/29295675/kcps-taps-allan-tunis-as-interim-superintendent#ixzz3dQRNt4e8

    [Looks like this school district has just as many or more racial issues as we.]

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