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The Trickle - special school board edition
September 9, 2008 - Brian Ferry
Are you done with that? During a meeting of the Warren County School Board, one member apologized for interrupting another. “Go ahead,” he said. The interrupted party said, “No, I’m done.” He then continued to speak for about 30 seconds.
Team player. When prompted by a board member on the need to have a district plan for funding day-to-day improvements and repairs to athletic fields and infrastructure and playgrounds, the superintendent knew just the man for the job. “I’m sure (an administrator) has a plan.” After sitting for a few moments in what looked to be surprised silence, the administrator in question agreed. “I’ll have that plan for you first thing in the morning.”
Don’t go near the water. Sometimes, school board members have difficulty with their computers. Who doesn’t? At a recent meeting, one board member was struggling through a vote, her computer teasing her, when a colleague remembered how a past member had handled computer problems. “He drove his car into the river and ruined it, so we had to give him a new one.” The threat worked and the computer began functioning properly. The head of the technology department offered to replace the machine without the need for a dunking.
Extra work. When the school board was discussing its ambitious list of long-lasting goals, the board president informally attached each goal to a committee. One board member, after finding that his committee had four of the nine goals, formally submitted his request for reassignment to the committee that only had one of the goals. There was no immediate motion to reassign.
Repeat, NOT closing Ike. Sometimes, using hypothetical examples can get people in trouble. When a school board member from the northern part of the county was talking about the middle school philosophy of the district, she said plans could be radically different based on the district’s master facilities plan. “If the master facilities plan (calls for an Eisenhower high school/middle school) the first five years’ Band-Aid is going to be very different than if the plan comes back that there isn’t going to be an Eisenhower.” Was she advocating the closure of Eisenhower? Of course not. Her understanding of the potential for misunderstanding led her to pose a hypothetical that wouldn’t get her in trouble for “suggesting” that some other school be closed.
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