kitchen table math, the sequel: trench warfare on the board of ed

Monday, January 17, 2011

trench warfare on the board of ed

Peter Meyer:
Re: [irvingtonparentsforum] Re: Is the Board violating the law?

To answer the question as straightforwardly as possible, as I read "the law," no individual board member has a right to do much of anything, including look at documents. Thus, you have to force the issue at a board meeting by getting the board to request the documents or, as an individual, file a FOIL request. (I am not a lawyer, so this is my opinion based on years, on and off the board, of fighting these battles.)

There is something which says any board member can ask for and see personnel records if a good reason is given (I'm sorry I'm not at my desk and can't quote chapter and verse), but when I tried that (we had teachers up for tenure), they claimed my reason wasn't good enough! This is real trench warfare up here, where most board members are afraid of their own shadow and being "a rogue" or a boat-rocker is considered a danger to the school. Thus, on some issues I have to shoot each arrow in the quiver -- demand the board vote, FOIL, and a letter to the editor. It's time consuming, of course, but if you're consistent about it (and civil), you won't need so many arrows for the next battle/request.

Because "the law" is so strange and complicated -- and stacked in favor of the status quo and those "leaders" of the status quo -- this stuff gets to be very personal. So, it helps to smile a lot while fighting. (I now know why Senators call their enemies across the aisle, "My dear colleague" -- though I don't know why Boehner cries all the time.)


administration spends $50K without board vote
"it's just about statistically impossible that a bid would come in at exactly $50K"
fields exchange at BOE meeting
school boards behaving badly
board member FOILs district docs
trench warfare on the board of ed

No comments: