Wednesday, October 15, 2014

They Had A Secret

Amherst Pelham Regional School Committee meeting last night

So I guess the way this works is the Regional School Committee and Union #26 directly oversees Superintendent Maria Geryk so that's why her salary/raise is an exact amount, and then they gave her a range for the new Assistant Superintendent, Mike Morris and the new Director of Finance Sean Mangano who she directly oversees.

Hey at least she didn't use the absolute top end with both those salaries. Although as I pointed out last month Mr. Morris @ $115, 000 gets a 15% raise and Mr. Mangano @ $95,000 a whopping 90% raise.  

Notice too there was no discussion whatsoever about job performance.  Like none.  Zero.

And since Tara Luce is an employee of the Public Schools that Maria Geryk oversees, she probably should have abstained. 

Interesting that rookie School Committee Chair Trevor Baptiste, who comes on like an opinionated bull in a dainty china closet, did abstain (for no apparent reason).

Click to enlarge/read

35 comments:

Anonymous said...

Should M Geryk resign or be fired as Superintendent?

Vote here: http://www.poll-maker.com/results152619x7F8f4fb7-6#tab-2

Anonymous said...

"...Trevor Baptiste, who comes on like an opinionated bull in a dainty china closet..."

Someone told me that last night at the SC meeting, during open meeting and during a discussion of matters that must be discussed openly, Baptiste, in his role as chair, said about the items being discussed: "I would rather not talk about these things publicly."

Is this true? Why does he seem intent (three times now) on thumbing his nose at OML?

Wake up Pelham.

Larry Kelley said...

Yeah, he did say that a couple times.

I think it was in reference to a sub committee chair appointment he made that Kathryn Appy seemed not to like.

If you're into inside stuff there were a few snippy exchanges between Baptiste and both Appy and O'Brien.

Anonymous said...

Do tell!

Anonymous said...

He wants to talk about specific young kids who live in town getting assaulted or doing the assaulting, publicly and with news crews present, but sub-committee chair appointments he made are too personal and sensitive to talk about publicly. Hmph.

Anonymous said...

Wake up Pelham? Wake up communities! I heard Trevor acted like a buffoon last night when he should be leading a business meeting like a grown up.

Mommy are you dysfunctional? said...

What we need now

is a much older

grey haired afro-american

to play the Fred part.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NIK9yffjRK8


One man's treasure

is another man's trash.


-Squeaky Squeaks

p.s. LOL!

Anonymous said...

Tara Luce did not abstain on her own boss' raise? Maybe her boss will reciprocate with by recommending a raise/promotion for Ms. Luce.

How is it not a conflict of interest for Ms. Luce to serve on a school committee with the same superintendent and many of the same administrators as the school district where she works?

Anonymous said...

These self-serving people are disgusting. Must be nice to get a 90 (90!!!!) percent raise.

Anonymous said...

It's time Baptiste explain in public why he removed Mr Obrien as chair of the policy subcommittee. This was the only subcommittee that he used a never used power of the chair to oust Mr Obrien. For no reason. Only because he could. There is no love lost between these 2 men so this ouster seems personal. And that is an abuse of power. It's time Mr Baptiste explain himself in public.
Can you imagine the hue and cry if it had been Mr Obrien as chair unilaterally ousting Shabazz as chair of the ETF. He would not be able to say I choose not to say in public any I abused my power in this way.
Mr Baptiste it's time you explained yourself. If you don't have a good reason then you have abused your power.

Anonymous said...

Acted like a buffoon last night? He acts like a buffoon all the time. These SC meetings are a joke now. Baptiste is a fool.

Anonymous said...

Will this be on ACTV?

Anonymous said...

They did not get a 90% raise. Sean got a new job. Hence the raise. Mike Morris got a new job. And hence the raise. They both got new positions. And since the positions were new how could there be a discussion of job performance. They just started.
If the SC hired someone totally new for the position there would be no talk of discussion of job performance or wondering why they got a certain salary.

Larry Kelley said...

I was thinking more of the Superintendent.

Anonymous said...

Ms Geryk's job performance was fully discussed in her evaluation.

Anonymous said...

The School Committee's own policy (Policy BDE) states that the School Committee chair "will appoint the subcommittee chair and its members." for each of the subcommittees.

Since he was following School Committee policy, why is what Mr. Baptiste did, being considered to be an inappropriate action and an abuse of power? Would not each School Committee chair, including Mr. O'Brien during his short tenure, have the right to do the same?

Anonymous said...

As I said Mr Baptiste used a power that is never used. He did not use that power to pick any other sub committee chair that night. He only used it to Mr Obrien and he refuses to explain himself. He chose someone to be chair who did not even want the job.
The practice has been that the sub committee meets and chooses its own chair.
Mr Baptiste made the selection publicly and he needs to explain himself publicly.
The SC is practicing a blatant double standard. They yelled and screamed about transparency all summer and now there is a deafening silence.

Anonymous said...

I think Mr. Baptiste is going to get old real fast.

Perhaps Ms. Appy, who claimed in both campaigns that the SC just before her initial election was "dysfunctional", may be reminding herself to "be careful what I wish for".

Good luck to anyone who has the stomach to sit and watch one of these meetings all the way through. This is the worst thing to witness on local cable since The Days of Awad.

Anonymous said...

There is no law against serving on the School Committee that oversees your employer?

Anybody know the law on this?

Anonymous said...

"I would rather not talk about these things publicly"?

Does he know the rules on executive session?

I hope we have a big old watchdog in the house.

A dog with a blog.

Anonymous said...

Anon 10:00pm. Have you not seen The Bruce Show?

Anonymous said...

There is a famous quote about the definition of insanity - doing the same things over and over in an attempt to change something while continually getting the same result. Kind of like banging your head against a stone wall. It will take a movement, a real, honest-to-goodness movement on the part of the 'people' to make changes in the Amherst schools. It's great for a blog such as this to have all these comments about wanting to get rid of Geryk and school committee members but when it comes down to it, nothing is going to happen by merely griping about it except for perhaps relieving some of the frustration on the part of the gripers. Action is where it's at. Otherwise, it's status quo all the way down the line.

Larry Kelley said...

But when you bang your head against the wall it feels so good to stop.

Of course, yet another reason to delay by many months the reappearance of Calvin Terrell.

Parents can't possibly bang their heads against the wall for that long a period of time.

Anonymous said...

I still don't understand Ms Geryk's not addressing the Terrell snaffu at the SC mtg. It is expected and claiming she had no new info is a blatant excuse. She is responsible and she should explain the issue and the accountability of her office to those who supervise her position. She had new information (while claiming she had none), ie Mr Terrell is coming in Jan to present to interested families. Regardless, she needs to explain how the admin made decisions (and mistakes). Explain the mistakes made (so we can be confident that they can accurately identify their mistakes (I"m not sure they can)). For example, Mr. Terrell claims that schools have a protocol to follow when he presents (and that ARPS was aware of this). Either he is mistaken or ARPS didn't follow it. If ARPS didn't follow it, why? What decisions underlie that course? Was it simply an oversight to send out inclusion forms? We they sitting on someone's desk and not mailed? Did someone decide NOT to offer them to families? These are important issues that the SC and school community members should have an expectation of explanation. The SC ought to demand more of Ms Geryk (and if not forthcoming, make clear to her the consequences...).

The admin has increasingly become NON-transparent. Reports (if such are ever produced) are hard to find (probably non-existent. For example
go to the link "Reports and Presentations"
Hand-outs from presentations made to the School Committee are available for review. Reports from previous years are available on the archive pages listed below. Go visit it- there are no reports on ongoing initiatives/programs. Either the admin doesn't produce them or they aren't evaluating them in a way meaningful enough to produce a document. These kinds of reports are essential, they aren't just busy work for the (numerous) admin staff.

Anonymous said...

I want transparency from the SC. Now that Baptiste is in charge there is NO transparency. He seems to have the notion that he can do whatever he wants without the need to explain his actions. He demands transparency from others but don't we dare ask him to explain himself. That's not the way it works Trevor.

Anonymous said...

and there was transparency before Mr. Baptiste became chair? not so much.

Remember how the nut ban guidelines were presented to the school committee: as part of the Superintendent's report, and not even listed on the agenda ... and how the Superintendent's contract was extended 5 years with little public input.

The administration should be more transparent.

At least Mr. Baptiste is allowing public comment on agenda items after they are discussed by the School Committee, as is permitted in the approved meeting procedures, but which has not been the practice in some time. The last (interim) chair of the Regional School Committee suggested that if the public wants comments on School Committee business, they can email the School Committee instead of spending time doing so at SC meetings when the agendas are already so full. Often such emails go unanswered and few people learn about the concerns they express. It is more transparent to have people's concerns aired in a public setting ... within the set time limits, of course.

Dr. Ed said...

"Ms Geryk's job performance was fully discussed in her evaluation."

"There is no need to worry about Ebola arriving in America."


Right.

Anonymous said...

The voting members group of the Equity Task Force were all appointed by Shabazz, and of course the voting members include Shabazz himself (he appointed himself chair of the ETF voting members group) Sonji Johnson-Anderson, Michael Burkhart, Vira Douangmany Cage, Russ Vernon-Jones, as well as one member to be named later (probably Kathleen Anderson.)

Anonymous said...

"Ms Geryk's job performance was fully discussed in her evaluation."

"There is no need to worry about Ebola arriving in America."


And the town is going to go into receivership and UMass is going to bug out and move east.

Dr.Ed said...

"And the town is going to go into receivership and UMass is going to bug out and move east."

See: http://www.pressherald.com/2014/10/15/umaine-trustees-nix-proposal-to-close-one-usm-campus/

Yep, the Univ of Southern Maine is going to lay off 50 faculty members and close two programs -- and remember that closing the French program at USM politically is the same as closing the AfroAm program at UMass.

And what's not being said is the staff cuts that have been made -- and future ones forthcoming. Haven't we been hearing of "layoffs" at UMass before?

Anonymous said...

Quite a balanced group of voting members on the ETF. NOT! No one will take their recommendations seriously. Why should we? It's disgusting.

Anonymous said...

The School Equity Task Force has 9 voting members, including an appointee of the APEA and Mark Jackson, not just the individuals listed in Anon 1:50's post.

Anonymous said...

Why were they planning to wear costumes to the next meeting? Our children are not allowed school celebrations that may offend classmates.

Anonymous said...

The School Equity Task Force has 9 voting members, including an appointee of the APEA and Mark Jackson, not just the individuals listed in Anon 1:50's post.

Yeah, and five (Shabazz, Johnson-Anderson, Burkhart, Douangmany-Cage, Vernon-Jones) are a majority who will never ever vote against each other.

Dr. Ed said...

It has often been said that those who fail to learn from the mistakes of history get to re-live them.

Would we all agree that the KKK is an evil outfit, the most inherently evil entity that has ever existed in this country?

OK, perhaps we should look at how it came into being -- Nathan Bedford Forrest was not an inherently evil man -- so why'd he found it? Look into what "Reconstruction" was -- and what was happening in the South at the time...

Do Shabazz & Co remember the darker side of the Civil Rights movement? College kids with GUNS at Cornell?

The real story behind Kwanzaa?

Reality is that if you exclude a group of people from the system, they will eventually go outside of it, and that can (and almost inevitably does) become rather nasty.

How long will it be before all the White boys in the Middle & High School all start getting together for mutual defense?

Have any of you ever read Lord of the Flies? Care to venture a guess as to the type of persons who winds up leading such a group, and what it thus becomes?

And what the hell are you planning on doing THEN????