Friday, January 3, 2020

Enough, already!!!

When will the school members stand up and shout "Enough!" at the Board Chair and Superintendent. It is they who prepare the agenda for board meetings.

The Special-Called Board Meeting on January 7, 2020 is for approval of a "General Fund Budget Amendment for 2019-20 Fiscal Year" and for reviewing and revising THIRTY-THREE Board Policies.

Members of the public should be alert to the fact that the District is not informing the public of the nature or amount of that Amendment. The Board, no doubt, will receive details in advance, but the public is left in the dark.


How many hours will be required of board members to examine carefully the proposed revisions and consider whether the revisions should be accepted as proposed, edited, modified, sent back for more work, or whether the entire Policy should be scrapped?

You can read the proposed revisions by viewing the Agenda on the District's website and clicking on the attachments.

How many of the board members actually and conscientiously read each and every proposed revision, so that they will be fully prepared to ask intelligent questions on Tuesday evening.

I recall one board meeting last year when one of the board members asked a question about a Policy revision (as I recall, it had to do with visiting classrooms). The staff person at the podium was really put on the spot. After a short pause, she explained that the answer to that question was in the Board brief. In other words, if that board member had read the attachment to that item in the Agenda, the board member would have known the answer.

No action is being requested on these 33 revisions on Tuesday night. A vote to approve them will be requested at the January 14th Regular Meeting.

Drug testing of expelled students

On the Special-Called Board Meeting on January 7, 2020 the school board will review and change Board Policy JKEE, which pertains to drug testing of certain expelled students.

Board members should rescind this entire policy.

Once a student is expelled, s/he is expelled. Out. Gone. Done. And that's the end of District involvement in that student's life.

If a student wants to re-enroll and the District evaluates re-enrollment, it should do so based on statements alone.

If the student is found to have violated Board Policy again, then toss him or her out again. A student should not have to give evidence against himself to give the District a heads-up on the violation.

Richland One Special Election - SEI Compliance

On December 31, 2019 Richland School District One held a special election to fill one seat on the school board. The vacancy was created when a member resigned and planned a move to Nebraska for a new job.

The successful candidate in the election is Jonathan M. Milling.

And wonder of all wonders, he filed his Statement of Economic Interests Report with the South Carolina Ethics Commission on October 21, 2019.

When the election is certified by the Richland County Elections Commission, Trustee-Elect Milling will become both qualified and eligible to take the Oath of Office and enter upon his official responsibilities.

Contrast this with two trustees-elect on the Richland School District Two Board. Amelia McKie and Teresa Holmes became qualified for the school board on November 6, 2018, but they have never legally become entitled to take office. They have never taken the oath of office legally.

Both took the oath of office illegally on November 13, 2018; "illegally" because neither had filed her required Statement of Economic Interests Report with the South Carolina Ethics Commission.

After The Independent Voice of Blythewood & Fairfield County blew the whistle, each filed her SEI on December 4, 2018.

Neither McKie nor Holmes has ever taken the oath of office legally on or since December 4, 2018.

Therefore, neither is on the School Board legitimately. Yet they are allowed to serve, to attend executive sessions, to hear confidential student matters and District business, to vote on motions, to be paid for serving, to hold memberships in associations.

How much longer with voters allow McKie and Holmes to usurp public office?