Monday, February 28, 2022

SRO Program - adding ten in Richland 2



WHAT: Officials with Richland School District Two and the Richland County Sheriff’s Department will hold a news conference to provide an update on the progress to add 10 School Resource Officers at Richland Two schools after receiving a grant from the
S.C. Department of Public Safety.

WHEN:  Wednesday, March 2, 2022, at 9 a.m. 

WHERE:  Richland Two Institute of Innovation (R2i2) Conference Center

How much manpower will be wasted on Wednesday morning, when a celebration is planned for something that is just a matter of pushing paper and money around?

Why not make a video and publish it on Livestream? 

An announcement like that would be perfectly adequate to inform the public that money has been found for ten more SROs. Why should there be pomp and circumstance surrounding this announcement?

Unless a few people are just wanting to plant more feathers in their caps and say, "Look at me. Look at me."

Richland 2 currently spends $4.5 Million on SROs. I was shocked a couple of years ago when the $150,000/year cost was mentioned at a board meeting. If I recall correctly, the cost of a deputy was about $80,000 and the sheriff charged $70,000/year for the deputy's equipment (uniform, firearm, leather, all the 40 lbs. of equipment, AND a patrol car).

A SRO's patrol car is a commuter vehicle. Why not tell him to drive his own car to work and back?

If there is a need to transport a miscreant to jail, call a road deputy for that. 

What McKie learned at the SCSBA party

What was it that Amelia McKie said at the February 22, 2022 board meeting?

Keep in mind that McKie has been on the school board since 2014. She has served as an officer of the board several times, and sometimes illegitimately. Like now.

She went to the South Carolina School Boards Association's annual convention on Hilton Head Island. It was held February 17-20. 

What did she learn? That there are three levels of authority that Richland 2 is governed by. 
1. S.C. law; 
2. Board Policy; 
3. Robert's Rules of Order.

Well!!! Wonder of all wonders! The mysteries of the Universe are revealed. How much of her $7,000 annual board expense money did it cost us for her to learn that?

Seriously? She spoke on February 22nd like that was something new. There is absolutely nothing new about that. 

That's how it always has been. That's how it is. That's how it will be.

The problem at Richland 2 is that the school board doesn't recognize it.

If it did, it would not tolerate two women on the board who have never taken the oath-of-office legally.

If it did, it would not tolerate a woman on the board who owes $57,100 to the S.C. Ethics Commission and who hasn't made any significant payments since a judgment was filed on July 10, 2019, in the Richland County Common Pleas Court.

If it did, it would not have tolerated a woman to continue serving as Board Chair between November 2018 and June 30, 2019, when she was no longer a legitimate member of the board (because she had not taken the oath-of-office legally).

And the board would not have elected her to serve as Secretary during the 2021-2022 school year, because only a legitimate board member can serve as an officer.

As Secretary, she should object when Minutes are inaccurate. Does she? Ever? Does she read the Minutes before a meeting? Does she read them critically? Shouldn't she be looking for errors and omissions? Shouldn't she be the first to make a motion to amend the Minutes and correct errors and omissions?

R2 changes FOIA procedure

In response to a FOIA Request filed this morning for all the records and statements pertaining to the January 25, 2022 incident (you know the one) just prior to the beginning of the board meeting at 5:30PM, I was informed by the FOIA Officer of a new procedure.

Now the District requets (requires?) the Request to be made on its webform, which can be found at  Before I use that form, I'll review South Carolina law. Many states allow a request to be submitted in narrative format, not using any form requested or demanded by the public body to which the Request is made.

Take a look at the description of the FOIA process posted on the District's website at that link. I'll tell you; the Federal Government has nothing on Richland 2. What did the preparation of that procedure cost? That's a week's worth of work by a high-priced lawyer. Was it done to simply to effort by the public? Or was there some other reason for it?

Particularly onerous is this section on the form:

Tell us who you areQuestion is mandatory
(Select one or more)

Richland 2 requires completion of that section (note the *), but I'm pretty sure the law does not require the Requestor to reveal his status in such a category. Any person can submit a FOIA Request. You don't have to live in the District or fit in any of those categories. 

Just imagine how that information could be used. The word "Weaponized" comes to mind. If a parent submits a FOIA Request, imagine how that might trickle down. If a student files a FOIA Request, would s/he have to worry about retribution or retaliation? Or a vendor? Kiss Good-bye to future work.

This new procedure pushes the request through the Let's Talk scheme of Richland 2 and provides a copy of the request by return email.