The Monday, June 1 Board meeting was held and a few items of interest are listed below.
Of course our main news item is the hiring of Dr. Stephen Green as our new superintendent. Below are links to his resume and contract. You can read his bio at Stan Jester’s post on the Fact Checker blog.
Employment Contract Overview
- Salary – $300K/year
- Length – 3 years (Pursuant to § 20-2-101)
- Expenses – $2,600/month
- Car allowance – $750/month
- Supplemental retirement plan in addition to TRS
- Retention bonus – $15K/year
For more on the subject of Dr. Green’s generous pay, read our post, Superintendent Green’s Contract: Giving Away The Farm?
Dr. Green has a lot of work to do and a lot of house cleaning in order to win the support of most of us in the community. We are withholding enthusiasm for now. We hope to have news of bold initiatives and personnel replacements. Time will tell if Dr. Green really has what it takes or if he will simply try to convince us that he can work with the current administration to make miraculous change as he collects a lovely salary and monthly stipend. In fact, we would question the character of a person who would accept an additional retirement package, when hired to lead teachers who have had theirs taken away. We will be watching to see if Dr. Green makes the teachers pay [proposed raises], annuities, benefits, and workload [class size and professional support] a first order of business. DeKalb continues to rank at or near the bottom in student achievement and hiring and retaining the best teachers is the only way to improve student outcomes.
Dr. Green does sound enthusiastic in his first video interview for PDS24.
Additionally, the 2nd Public Budget Hearing, Community Input Session & 1st Public Millage Rate Hearing was held at 5:45. The DeKalb School Board is about to vote to keep your property tax millage rate at the very high [temporary] rate set by the previous board when property values declined during the recession. Read our post on the subject below. We strongly urge you to attend these millage rate hearings and voice your concern. Your ‘rate’ may remain the same, but your property value will definitely increase when set by the county tax assessor. This is very hard to contest once set.
News has been swirling that the school formerly known as DSA, Open Campus and Briarcliff High School is now on the docket to be rebuilt in order to house the burgeoning student growth in the Cross Keys cluster. Read Mr. Thurmond’s plan here:
Below is a link to the school district’s proposed very healthy, $875 million FY2016 budget, due to the increased property tax rate as well as a substantial increase in FTE credits from the state.
Further, Mr. Thurmond, after nearly three years at the helm, finally ‘discovered’ that DeKalb has no curriculum! Better late than never. He has committed $500,000 to develop one. Of course, he thinks this is possible using the very same people who have happily ‘led’ the system sans curriculum for over 15 years. Bear in mind, Michael Thurmond allocated over $72.5 million* to his “Bridge Initiative” which has no measurable goals and from what we can tell, is essentially a tv show. [Look up cognitive dissonance theory.]
And if you’re wondering what is going on with the deadline to choose which kind of school district DeKalb will select, read this post: DeKalb Charter System Update, at the Fact Checker blog.
1. DeKalb Board of Education 2nd Millage Rate Hearing, 11:30am, Wednesday, June 17, 2015 and 3rd Millage Rate Hearing & Called Meeting, 6:15pm, Wednesday, June 17, 2015, J. David Williamson Board Room, Robert R. Freeman Administrative & Instructional Complex, 1701 Mountain Industrial Boulevard, Stone Mountain
2. SPLOST Oversight Committee Meeting, 6:00pm, Thursday, June 25, 2015, Conference Room, Same A. Moss Service Center, 1780 Montreal Road, Tucker
3. DeKalb Board of Education Work Session (2:00pm), Community Input Session (5:45pm) and Business Meeting (7:00pm), Monday, July 13, 2015, J. David Williamson Board Room, Robert R. Freeman Administrative & Instructional Complex, 1701 Mountain Industrial Boulevard, Stone Mountain
For more information on meetings, click here.
* We originally reported this number as $3 million, but that is only the ‘unbudgeted’ amount of the Bridge Initiative. The true budget for the program was $72.5 million — virtually the ENTIRE Ttitle 1 budget for ALL schools — proposed by Michael Thurmond and
rubber-stamped approved by the DeKalb Board of Education!!