The election is over and the voters have spoken. There are a few conclusions you can draw. First, to the current Board, the results are meaningful. Voters had a choice between endorsing the approach of the past year, under current leadership, or voicing their preference for a change. Their voice should be heard loud and clear. The approach of the past year was not supported by a majority of the voters. That is a fact, not subject to interpretation as the current Vice-President did not garner enough support to remain on the Board. Regardless of the specific topic or approach, maintenance of the status quo was rejected. Please respect the voters, who chose not to re-elect current leadership, and make no significant decisions before the current term ends. To do so would be to replace your judgment for that of the electorate, the Oxford definition of authoritarianism - “lack of concern for the wishes or opinions of others.” The majority of “others” have now spoken. You were not elected to cram major decisions into the last few months of the current term. You were elected to represent us, not replace your judgment for ours.
The Board President is tasked with selecting items for the consent agenda. Her term is soon over. She will leave the Board in a month. Despite this Ms. Fuehrer is seeking to extend the superintendent’s contract one additional year. This is a violation of the public trust. We have elected two new Board members and rejected the leadership of Ms. Singer. Again, that is factual. By electing Jessica and Jim, we have expressed our desire to have them included in major decisions regarding our schools. By extending Thomas’s contract by one year, the Board will remove them from impactful discussion of his performance as they will have no say in his employment. This is precisely the type of decision they were elected for. We hope that you will recall the action of two years ago when the current Board extended Thomas’s contract for a total of 5 years. The recently elected Board members felt that was wholly inappropriate and the decision should have been held until they were sworn in. I hope your memories are not that short.
The more pressing questions is why? There are three years left on the superintendent’s contract. What is the urgency to extend his contract now? We will not opine on Thomas’s performance as that is not the concern here. The timing is suspect. Board members have just been elected, and are about to take office, but their voice may be muted before they even arrive.
If you agree that the new Board members you elected should be involved in these discussions, and that they should not be decided by Board leadership that is about to end their term, please email email@example.com. You need not write a novel, just a quick note to let them know how you feel.
The voters have spoken and it is time for our Board to listen.