Metuchen High Principal Focus of BOE Meeting TONIGHT

| 91 Comments
Now that Mr. Novak has decided to leave his post as Metuchen High School principal, the search is on for a new admnistrator and, with that, comes a very specific set of guidelines for the filling of that position. Superintendant Terri Sinatra will address thse guidelines and explain the vetting process this week at the Board of Education's meeting Tuesday, June 16th at 8 PM in the Metuchen High School cafeteria. The event will be carried live on METV but if you have any particular questions or concerns related to this process, your attendance is requested.

91 Comments

And how about his comment in the Sentinel about how 70s students were angry? We had reason to be - the schools were overcrowded and the voters were always voting down the budgets and referendums.

I am so happy Mr. Novak is leaving. As a former student of MHS, I have seen many more parents and teachers give a shit about the school and its student than he ever did. I never liked him, nor did my fellow classmates. Can't say many of the teachers or other staff members there did either. MHS needs someone who calls themself the principal to actually give a damn and step outside their office more than once in a while. I've always had, for lack of a better word, hatred for Novak. During my time at MHS, I've seen him a handful of times, and during those times he was not doing a damn thing. What the hell kind of principal is that? His gratitude and so called greatfulness always went to the wrong person. So please, kindly choose someone who knows what they are doing and actually cares about the wellbeing of the school.

1:38, I disagree - it means we get less money from than we did when we were GH, even though the criteria are not solely means based. You can be well educated and not wealthy.

Will there be an official announcement letting us know who the principal is before the hiring?

Will there be an official announcement letting us know who the principal is before the hiring?

The new Principal of Campbell School will be hired at the Board of Education meeting on Monday, June 29th. The meeting will be at 8:00 at Borough Hall. I believe it will be televised by METV.

Let's not get caught up in the DFG. Let's look to those NJ districts that are academically superior, some of them are J districts, some are I districts like us. How do they pick leaders? What do they do to encourage all their kids to challenge themselves?

Let's not get caught up in the DFG. Let's look to those NJ districts that are academically superior, some of them are J districts, some are I districts like us. How do they pick leaders? What do they do to encourage all their kids to challenge themselves?

We are lucky to be an I district.

5:25, I disagree about the J district comment - when I watched the candidate's night I recall Ms. Andrews saying she would do whatever she could to make Metuchen into a J district. Not "like" a J district. Perhaps not what she meant to say, but it wasn't "obvious" to me that what she meant was she wanted to be "like" a J district, rather I thought she didn't understand what the DFG meant.

I think more parents are concerned about the high school is because its success is important to elementary, middle, and high school parents. It also plays a larger role on property value than the elementary school.

To June 19, 2009 1:47 PM - I bet Mrs. Brennan wishes she had that comment back. It was very obvious the speaker was suggesting we strive to perform like a J District, not actually become one.

What do you mean that Montclair is always in the top 10-15% (what scale)?

In the lasted NJ Monthly ratings which is based on standard academic measurements which are used to measure schools all across the country, Montclair placed #85---good but not great, similar to MHS.


Focusing on the high school is important, but Sophia is right: focusing on all the schools is important as well.

I think the search committee for the Campbell principal surprised us all. It seemed to happen quickly and it was disturbing that no board members or community members were appointed to the committee.
That's why the search committee for the high school principal was brought up by a member of the public at the May 27 BOE meeting. When at the June 9 BOE meeting it was stated that no board of education members would be appointed to the principal committee it became apparent that the public needed to be more involved and that at the very least, members of the BOE should be appointed to the search committee.

At the June 9 meeting, 4 members of the BOE spoke against having boe members on the committee, and no other BOE member disagreed. Because no board member spoke in favor of being on the committee, the public also realized that boe members needed to understand that it's their responsibility to serve on the committee.

The public needs to be involved and reach out to their board members throughout the year. We should have an open process in selecting a principal--board of ed members included and a few members of the community.

09:40-Montclair is always in the top 10-15 percent and they know that helps their property values. We have to stay at the top of our game or MEtuchen may lose the good name we have had for so long.

Before you bash the guy, maybe you should find out what he achieved in Trenton. But back to our own issues- I still don't understand why we are all so focused on the HS, but have very little interest in the elementary school. I hope that at least this discussion has made everyone aware that we want the board to be involved at a minimum in the entire process for the HS and not just the end. To the person who said Millburn- demographically we are above them and they seem to have the education recipe figured out- we should definitely check out and determine which parts of their selection processes we might want to emulate.

Maybe he interviews really well, who knows? Do we really care who Montclair picks as their principal?

Montclair HAD parents on their selection committee!

Let's not go from good to not so good.

We need someone great!

Let's not go from good to not so good.

I guess Montclair wanted someone well rounded to understand many different social cultures, maybe the thought is that he can reach all children and bring the best out of them.

What was Montclair thinking? Trenton Central is at the bottom of the academic heap in the state.

A good fit is very important in terms of finding a principal who understands the school's social culture and can enhance it. But I hope our district looks for that kind of fit in a leader who also understands how to strengthen the academic culture of MHS.

"A former principal at Trenton Central High School, James Nathaniel Earle has been tapped to helm Montclair High School, and will start within one month. According to the district website, Earle has experience in small learning communities, which is something Montclair likes too. "He has headed a high-performing district, and he's well-versed in the kind of diverse, vibrant and outspoken school culture that's exemplified at Montclair High School." from baristanet.com/ I think it is pretty cool that they took someone from a large, diverse school.

That's a silly argument. No one is talking DFG now.
Let's look at the districts that are consistently outperforming MHS academically and try to emulate their best practices in attracting and hiring a leader.

Millburn is a J district, but Westfield and Summit are I districts like Metuchen. The point is that we should aspire to do better academically. There's always room for improvement and looking to schools that outperform us, whatever the DFG, is the way to go.

As Mrs. Brennan said, Metuchen can't "aspire" to become a "J" or more affluential district unless 1/2 the citizens (with lower incomes) move OUT of town or a lot of people hit the lottery and stay in town.

Yes, it's a good idea to canvas the other districts, but in particular, it makes sense to canvas the better districts (in terms of academic outcomes). Those are the districts we should aspire to become. How districts like Millburn, Summit, Westfield, etc. attract and select their leaders should be part of our focus.

Mrs. Sinatra promised to canvass other NJ school districts for their policies on HS principal searches...let's see what she comes back with.

Mr. Akey was advocating for an open process in selecting the next principal of the high school, which includes members of the BoE and a few members of the community. His tone was appropriate; his word sincere. The better districts select principals with a wide search and a committee that includes both BoE members and community members.

Please understand that the search committee for Mr. G did not include board members or members of the community. Also realize that when asked by the public at two earlier meetings, the board responded that board members would not be included in the committee for the hs principal either. I think it was the public's urging that BoE members now understand it is their place to sit on such a committee.

When I watched the meeting last night, what I heard Mr. Akey say was that BoE members should certainly be included AND a few key members of the community.

I hope the BoE does look into how the other districts go about doing a national search and who they have sitting on the search committee. It is a good thing to step out of our comfort zone sometimes and look to see the best practices of the better districts in our state. To ignore those practices is foolish.

I watched the BoE meeting again last night and realized that I mistook Tony Akey for Jim Jacques. I'd never met either gentleman, and they said their names so quickly, that I thought Mr. Akey was Mr. Jacques. It wasn't until seeing the meeting a 2nd time that I knew who was whom. So, I apologize to Mr. Jacques and the CQE for my posts yesterday.

However, as civil as Mr. Akey's TONE was, his WORDS were definitely sending a clear message of distrust and became abusive, as evidenced by Mrs. Brennan's, Mrs. Golbe's and Mr. Benderly's emotional responses.

The public IS represented by the BoE members...that's their job and it's why they were elected! For Mr. Akey to suggest otherwise WAS abusive.

Allow the public to suggest questions that candidates would have to answer and to suggest qualifications that candidates would have to have in order to be considered...great ideas. However, as one public speaker said during the meeting, and I apologize for not remembering her name, only people from the public who are experienced in education and qualified to interview a principal, should be allowed to request to be part of the interview process. Anyone else, thanks for asking but no thanks. I'm extremely interested in the process and would like to make sure that the best possible canidate is hired for the job, but am I qualified to participate? No, and those who are not shoudln't even think of asking.

Furhtermore, those members of the public who become part of the interview process should be required to sign agreements that they won't independently check candidate references...that should be done by either a BoE member or Mrs. Sinatra ONLY.

I was at the meeting, and I'm not with CQE either. I didn't stay until the very end, I'll admit. I would have liked to hear about the Campbell Principal but I didn't quite realize how the different parts of the meeting fit together. Thank you, Eileen, for explaining that.

I thought everyone -- the Board and the audience -- handled what was a fairly difficult discussion pretty well. Government at every level works best in the presence of a loyal opposition. I felt that the Board heard and understood the concerns of the audience and I left with a much better understanding of what worries the Board is wrestling with.

As Sophia said, the meeting felt more like an honest, civil, public brainstorming than a slug-fest. That can't be a bad thing.

There was also a post on here and on nj.com by Fran Brennan of the BOE.

I was at the meeting and stayed til the end- where was CQE bashing the board- the comments I heard were from the public- polite, and very intelligent. Other than Jim Jacques were all the folks who spoke CQE? I'm not. As far as I saw at most 5 maybe 6 people spoke including myself (after most everyone left). I don't understand - if anything the board was getting very upset- but the person who spoke the most was outright asked by the board to come back to the podium at least once. Unless I completely misunderstood - this was the start of the determination on how best to conduct this process - it ended up being a public brainstorming. It sometimes scares me that I live in a town where things get so twisted at times.

I got more than one email from more than one person

I urge everyone to watch the meeting tonight on METV.

Thank you to all the public who came out and asked that BOE members be on the hs principal search committee and that members of the public be included as well. The search for the new principal has been raised by the public at the last 3 BOE meetings over the last month. On June 9, President Terri Kohl strongly stated that NO BOE member or member of the public would be included because of "matters of confidentiality." At that meeting many BOE members publicly agreed with this stand, not one disagreed.

Things can only change with public support. Thank you BOE members who now seek to be on the committee.

I urge you all to watch the meeting to see the speakers who were extremely informative about how the process is handled in other districts. Every speaker was courteous and polite.

It's everyone's responsibility to stay informed and involved.


Thank you, Eileen. That is a helpful clarification. I'll be sure to watch the replay on MeTV.
Best regards,
Jim Jaques

Just to clarify, the Board of Education meetings usually consist of two parts, an agenda or open conference session followed by a business meeting. During the agenda session, information is presented but no formal action is taken. As I recall, most of the audience left at the close of the agenda session, perhaps not realizing that additional information would result from the business meeting. Agendas for both meetings are placed at the back of the room and include the points at which the public is invited to speak. Frequently, the Board,upon the close of the business meeting, meets in closed session to discuss confidential issues in accordance with the Sunshine Law. Any member of the public is welcomed to attend the open meetings of the Board of Education.

Who sent the email? I didn't get one, so it must have been sent to members of a group whose purpose is education-related.

Many attended b/c an e-mail was sent asking them to attend to show that the public was interested in participating in the principal selection. That gives the message that they are going as part of a group and not just representing themselves.

Maybe to avoid all the negative comments on this blog, Metuchen Matters should require that only registered members be allowed to post. Most blogs work like that any way. People think twice about what they say when their name is attached to it!

Terry never adjourned the meeting after the HS principal discussion. The BOE went right into the discussion on the Campbell Principal position at which time 95% of the public got up and left. When discussions took place in the past about the Campbell Principal, no one showed up to ask about public participation. Members of the public who want to be informed should attend more meetings, not just the ones where there is an adgenda item of interest.

Today must be "National Multiple Posting Day"!

I read through these posts and I don't see where "anonymous" said that Jim said anything about the Principal. Maybe whatever Jim said was anti-BoE in general? As Warner Wolf used to say, "Let's go to the video tape!"

I read through these posts and I don't see where "anonymous" said that Jim said anything about the Principal. Maybe whatever Jim said was anti-BoE in general? As Warner Wolf used to say, "Let's go to the video tape!"

I read through these posts and I don't see where "anonymous" said that Jim said anything about the Principal. Maybe whatever Jim said was anti-BoE in general? As Warner Wolf used to say, "Let's go to the video tape!"

I read through these posts and I don't see where "anonymous" said that Jim said anything about the Principal. Maybe whatever Jim said was anti-BoE in general? As Warner Wolf used to say, "Let's go to the video tape!"

Will this meeting be shown again on MeTV? If so, watching the meeting will clearly show who said what.

I don't think Jim spoke about the Principal at all. He asked a couple of very harmless questions about state testing and said he hoped the kindergarten good-playground-behavior goals wouldn't detract from more academic work. Where in the world did you get the idea that he was "abusing, cursing, and discrediting" the board, even if you define cursing as having a "negative, distrustful tone"? It just didn't happen.

Multiple-posting in error can happen to anyone! Jim was probably a victim of refreshing as well. The managers of the site can delete the extra postings if they want to.

People who belong to any group do so because they espouse the same beliefs as the organization of which they are a member. When members of a group speak about issues directly related to the group's purpose, because they are the makeup of that group they become de-facto speakers for that group. So, even though you may not have stated that you were speaking on behalf of the CQE, to the citizens of Metuchen you ARE the CQE.

Had this been a Borough Council meeting on street paving, or some other non-education issue, your speaking as Jim Jaques - regular citizen would be true.

However, when you speak at a BoE meeting, announced or not, you're speaking as the CQE President. To say otherwise would be like the President of Ford Motor Company speaking at a Congressional Hearing on the Auto Industry but stating that he's not speaking on behalf of Ford...it doesn't work that way.

Dear Metuchenites,

I have read the comments here and on the NJ.com forum regarding the Board of Education meeting June 16th. For the record, let me state that nobody who spoke at that meeting spoke on behalf of CQE. There were many well-considered comments from the voting public, parents and community members who care passionately about the future of Metuchen's schools. However, they all spoke as individuals, not as spokespeople for CQE. I myself spoke at the meeting as well. Nobody who spoke identified themselves as speaking for the organization.

The CQE position is that the public should have some role in the hiring process of a new principal. We agree that the Board of Education, our elected representatives in the Metuchen educational infrastructure, should be heavily involved and should represent the community's interests. Exactly what role community members should play has not yet been determined, and we seek to engage the Board members to determine exactly that role. I believe this stance is completely in line with the Board's and administration's own views.

Regarding the end of the meeting, upon the end of the discussion regarding the hiring process for Mr. Novak's replacement, I'm fairly certain that Ms. Kohl adjourned the meeting and announced the start of the closed session. Everyone who was there for the discussion of the high school principal hiring process stayed until that point. If there was discussion around the replacement of the Campbell School principal after that, I was unaware of it. I personally believe that this is also a crucial hire, and one that is much further along. I am curious to know why there has been no public input into this process, and whether or not there is still opportunity for such.

If anyone has any questions or comments regarding CQE's positions on educational issues in our town, I encourage you to visit the website, www.metuchencqe.org, and to contact us via email. Thanks very much!

Best regards,
Jim Jaques
CQE President

You are correct, Eileen. Not cursing, as in using swear words, but the negative, mistrustful tone on their part was certainly there. You have to agree with that.

I apologize for the use of that word.

Posting twice was not intentional. My computer was not responding so I refreshed, which made the post hit twice.


Thank you Eileen.

Your leadership is appreciated.

For the record, I was at the meeting. I did not hear any cursing. The public is always welcomed at Board of Education meetings. There are several opportunities for public comment. Everyone should feel comfortable expressing their views. Agree with them or disagree with them, everyone who spoke from the podium on Tuesday night was civil.

nj.com forums are for half-wits who scratch themselves too much. Nothing good comes out of it and it is downright nasty when names are named in a small town. Keep that trash there and keep the positive comments that may help to improve things here.

Who was cursing anybody?

How many times you going to post this? Three times here, once on NJ.COM

You may have a point but when you resort to spamming the same message, it gets put where spam belongs, in the trash.

The CQE made its presence known at this meeting, and took every opportunity to bash the BoE stating that they didn't know what they were doing and that the CQE didn't trust the BoE members.

The CQE says that they speak for the citizens of Metuchen. Maybe at one point in time, but not any longer. If the CQE did speak for the citizens of Metuchen, then they'd be AGREEING with what the BoE is doing, rather than abusing, cursing, and discrediting them as they tried to do on Tuesday night.

If the citizens of Metuchen agreed with the CQE, then the CQE-backed candidates in the last BoE election would have won by a landslide.

However, the citizens of Metuchen, me included, do trust the current BoE. That's why, on average, the encumbents were re-elected by a margin of almost 3 to 1!

The CQE talks about current BoE members having personal agendas. That's what the CQE is...a personal agenda.

It's time for the CQE to disband!

The CQE made its presence known at this meeting, and took every opportunity to bash the BoE stating that they didn't know what they were doing and that the CQE didn't trust the BoE members.

The CQE says that they speak for the citizens of Metuchen. Maybe at one point in time, but not any longer. If the CQE did speak for the citizens of Metuchen, then they'd be AGREEING with what the BoE is doing, rather than abusing, cursing, and discrediting them as they tried to do on Tuesday night.

If the citizens of Metuchen agreed with the CQE, then the CQE-backed candidates in the last BoE election would have won by a landslide.

However, the citizens of Metuchen, me included, do trust the current BoE. That's why, on average, the encumbents were re-elected by a margin of almost 3 to 1!

The CQE talks about current BoE members having personal agendas. That's what the CQE is...a personal agenda.

It's time for the CQE to disband!

The CQE made its presence known at this meeting, and took every opportunity to bash the BoE stating that they didn't know what they were doing and that the CQE didn't trust the BoE members.

The CQE says that they speak for the citizens of Metuchen. Maybe at one point in time, but not any longer. If the CQE did speak for the citizens of Metuchen, then they'd be AGREEING with what the BoE is doing, rather than abusing, cursing, and discrediting them as they tried to do on Tuesday night.

If the citizens of Metuchen agreed with the CQE, then the CQE-backed candidates in the last BoE election would have won by a landslide.

However, the citizens of Metuchen, me included, do trust the current BoE. That's why, on average, the encumbents were re-elected by a margin of almost 3 to 1!

The CQE talks about current BoE members having personal agendas. That's what the CQE is...a personal agenda.

It's time for the CQE to disband!

Yes, after most of the public left and then the Board read through (the boring part of the meeting) all the items to vote on- Mrs. Sinatra briefly gave an update on the search for the Campbell Principal. After which our interim HS principal gave an overview of his experience- why were there 5 of us in the audience listening? I am shocked that everyone is not equally focused on the Campbell school replacement and am not happy that the board has not been more involved with the replacement. The argument that was made on Tuesday evening regarding the board being elected as our voice in regards to the HS Principal but yet not being an equal voice for the Campbell Position selection process worries me. Not that I do not trust our administration - but even in the corporate world when one goes through to select a candidate for a "high level management" position more people are involved than a handful (none of which were board members in this case). It is only now that the board is being involved in the final selection process? Why didn't we have the same discussions regarding this position- what is the job description and qualifications were are looking for BEFORE we go through the selection process?

Is that the new talking point? Call everyone a dictator?

ZZZZzzzzzzz

he was a dictator. The worse kind.

Maybe those people have kids at Edgar. Maybe they think all the candidates for the Campbell position are equally qualified.

And how is "nitnylion" any better than "anonymous"? There's a very good reason why you shouldn't put your name on internet posts - it could cost you a job. People are entitled to their personal opinions and some want to be able to share theirs without fear of repurcussions. What if you lost out on a job because the hiring manager googled your name and didn't like your opinions?

Can the meeting be viewed on METV? They showed it live, but I didn't catch it.

Just wondering why the community members had no interest in the selection process for the principal at Campbell school. The focus needs to be on the entire district and not just the High School. I know the High School performance drives the ratings, which everyone is concerned with, however, the better the lower schools are, the better the HS will be as well. The group at the meeting last night actually walked out after the HS principal discussion when the discussion turned to the Campbell school principal.

Kate-

I agree 100 percent with your position with regards to this Internet forum. Although all opinions have merit, it is obvious that the anonymous comments carry zero weight. If someone cannot put their sign in name to their comment then it is obvious that they do not stand behind these comments. I have learned to skip pass these posts. Just take a look how this constructive conversation broke down to McCain and Palin and Obama. What a joke.

I hope that our board members can see through this nonsense and take advantage of the talents that exist within the town of Metuchen to aid the efforts to fill the high school principal position.

"Heck, he couldn't even remember how many houses he owned. Yikes!"

Well, when you have that many.....

"If you don't like it, go KYS"?
How about you GU...Grow Up?

And Mccain choosing Palin was a gift to Obama, think that sealed the deal for lots of folks.

Mccain acts conservative when he needs to be, but seemed to be way out of touch. Heck, he couldn't even remember how many houses he owned. Yikes!

This isn't the place for this, but Obama ran against GWB as much as he did against McCain.

I do have to agree though, McCain ran one of the worst campaigns I have ever watched.

On a side note, McCain isn't all that conservative and was attacked by Obama for some of the same plans that he wants to implement right now (i.e. healthcare/Gitmo trials etc.).

This is dirty Jerzy, thats how we talk

If you don't like it, go KYS

STFU? Nice language! Let's try to respect one another and keep this civilized.

All Obama had to do was remind everybody who he was running against.

Mccain/Palin both were not ready for prime time

Neither had any plans or ideas that had any appeal to Americans other than the fringe right wing

And Palin came off as unbelievable stupid.

"Magazines? I read them all, every one..."

Seems to have worked for Obama.

settle down beavis, it was a joke aimed at all the political hacks in Metuchen

what do you mean by "our" candidates? Seems to me that the candidates that the overwhelming majority of people who came out to vote for were elected....... so in essence, "OUR" candidates were elected, our being the people of Metuchen!

So we can't keep calling the former mayor a Dictator and yelling "Its all Ed's Fault"?

Great, now how do we get our candidates elected?

I'd like to echo Kara's comments. I truly appreciate that the Board members allowed the parents in the audience so much time to speak last night, especially since they probably had several hours of meeting left after everybody else went home. It is obvious that they take their responsibilities seriously, and I'm glad they are working so hard for our town and for our children.

I also very much hope that we can continue to talk about this issue without letting it get too ugly. The Internet could be a fabulous tool to help the whole community come together and share ideas, not just about the principal selection but about all sorts of ways to energize and engage our kids. But if we do manage to create that kind of on-line forum, we are going to be talking about the things that are most precious to us, the lives and futures of our children. For that to do any good, we are going to have to lower our defenses and be honest about our hopes and fears. But honesty in a public forum like this can be terrifying because it leaves us so sickeningly vulnerable to anonymous attack.

If we can be civilized, I think we can work together to help the Board do great things for our schools. If not, our children will be the ones who lose.

Seems to me the parents should be the the most involved. They are the ones who will pay for it and they are the ones that will benefit from a good choice.

I thought the meeting last night was informative and I do appreciate that the Board of Education members and Mrs. Sinatra are interested in public involvement in determining the criteria for the new MHS Principal. As the process continues to develop, I just hope that this does not become another hot button issue that divides the town. There will always be opinions that differ, but I think that if we can approach the topic in the spirit that we all live together in a very small town, and we all want the best for our children, we can all work together and be productive.

It wasn't stated that you have to be qualified to participate and express your opinion at a public meeting, however if members of the public were to serve on the selection committee, they certainly should be qualified!

Never asked for your vote and never will

Never asked for your money and you don't pay my salary

But I will ask you to STFU

(though I doubt you will listen)


Don't ask me to vote for you and then tell me to STFU and go away. Don't accept my money that pays your salary and then do the same.

Thought the school board was great, wished some of the know it all parents would STFU

These folks want to get invloved, volunteer or run yourself for school board.

Very happy with all the board members, keep up the great work

The public doesn't have to be "qualified" to participate in a public meeting. You are entitled to present your opinion to the board at a public meeting. They of course are free to ignore your opinion. Everyone has a personal agenda. To think otherwise is naive.


As stated at the meeting, the board, by law, is not allowed to discuss any issues including the selection of a principal unless it is at a public meeting that has been advertised etc. If they came prepared to the first discussion about the selection of the principal and knew exactly what their roles were, I would have been very concerned that discussions were taking place behind closed doors that shouldn't have been. That being said, the public should have some input in the process,however there is probably a very small percentage of the public that would be qualified to participate. There could not be a personal agenda, or the agenda of an affiliated group. All segments of the population would need represented. The selection process for those in the public who would be qualified to participate would need to be as stringent if not more stringent than the candidate selection process. Some good ideas were presented and I look forward to hearing exactly what other districts do for their selection process. The comments from the public were generally good, however sometimes the presentation comes off as being confrontational. I can see why the board members might take offense.

I am so happy that Mr. Novak is gone. he has done nothing at that school except collect a fat pay check for the past 10 years. They have a great replacement in Mr. Peragallo. With him as principal the high school will finally get back on track. Good riddance Novak....

It was clear that a majority of the members had their agenda defined--"we're elected, we'll decide." What arrogance. Thank goodness for all those in the audience who spoke. Each made exceptional points. I hope the board heard that message. Yes, they were elected to represent us and they are doing their jobs well by keeping us informed of the critical issues (i.e., principal selection) and inviting us to their meetings. Now, though, is the time to welcome and encourage the input of this vibrant community. Lastly, I was taken aback by the conduct Ms. Kohl who was combative with the public and frequently interrupted the speakers. The board will have to be more patient if we are going to get the result we all appear to want.

Is anyone else out there shocked how misinformed and unprepared our school board represented themselves this evening at the meeting? Together they contradicted themselves so many times with regards to the degree of the board's involvement in the early stages of the interview process. I realize that this was a preliminary meeting but shouldn't have all of the board members been better informed? The absence of a plan and tabling this process over the summer seems like quite a cop out. Why do our board members take such offense to the position that there are well qualified professional interview professionals in our town that could aid their efforts? These volunteer resources should be utilized.

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