After listening to 13 parents plead with them not to do it, the Evanston/Skokie School District 65 board voted 5-2 Monday night to extend the contract of Superintendent Hardy Murphy by one year so it continues to run five years into the future.

But, for the second year in a row, Murphy’s contract does not call for a pay hike next year.

After listening to 13 parents plead with them not to do it, the Evanston/Skokie School District 65 board voted 5-2 Monday night to extend the contract of Superintendent Hardy Murphy by one year so it continues to run five years into the future.

But, for the second year in a row, Murphy’s contract does not call for a pay hike next year.

Voting for the extension were Board President Keith Terry, Kim Weaver, Andrew Pigozzi, Bonnie Lockhart, and Jerome Summers. Voting against were Tracy Quattrocki and Katie Bailey.

The parents who testified, backed up by more than 60 vocally enthusiastic supporters in the audience, focused their comments in four areas: performance reviews, timing, the economy, and fiscal responsibility.

Performance reviews. While none of the parents specifically questioned the performance of the superintendent, many of them expressed doubt as to whether the board had established performance goals in advance and had measured the superintendent’s performance against those goals.

Asked one: “What are the performance criteria?” Another noted that performance goals are generally specified at the beginning of each school year and that a long-term contract represents a positive evaluation of “goals that haven’t even been written yet.”

Timing. Because Murphy’s current contract was extended last year to June 30, 2014, many of the parents questioned whether another extension should be granted this early.

Said one: “We should consider (a contract renewal) a year before the current contract expires.” Another said that three years out should be sufficient. Still others noted that his contract will expire after the term of board members that are elected next year.

The Economy. In an uncertain economy, with unemployment at a high level and with state finances perilous, parents who testified questioned whether it was prudent to pay a specific salary five years into the future.

A couple of them were quick to note that the city of Evanston’s department heads, including the city manager, were actually taking a 5 percent pay cut. “This is a slap in the face of those who have lost their jobs,” said one parent.

Fiscal Responsibility. Because the district is projecting large budget deficits for 2012 and 2013, some parents said the board was acting recklessly in guaranteeing the superintendent’s salary. “Committing to a five- year contract exposes Evanston taxpayers to significant and unnecessary risk,” declared one parent.

After hearing the public comments, Weaver moved that the contract extension be granted.

Weaver, who voted yes, said that the board regularly evaluates the superintendent’s performance when they discuss personnel issues in executive session.

She also defended the timing issue, saying that “June is the natural time to do a review. You can put it on the calendar for next year,” she said. She expressed confidence that Murphy is moving the district in the right direction.

Quattrocki, who voted no, said Murphy “should not have asked for an extension at this time.” She noted that city officials had taken a pay cut and that the superintendent “has often talked about shared sacrifice. We are sending the wrong message to our teachers and to the community.”

She said she had received 150 emails from constituents on this issue “and not one of them is in favor” of a contract extension.

Pigozzi, who voted yes, said he has a problem with short-term contracts. Knowing that the superintendent will be around for the next five years is a benefit to the district, he declared, and that it is not good to have a “parade of superintendents” that stay for a short time and then exit.

His assertion that “it is not easy to find a superintendent in this market right now” was met with a negative reaction from some in the audience. “I am sympathetic to the public’s point of view,” he said, “but I think it is the wise thing to do.”

Terry, who voted yes, said the district has benefited tremendously from the stability of a long-term contract. “Dr. Murphy has been good for us,” he declared, adding, “if there’s a good relationship , you should extend.” Terry confessed that he had some doubts about Murphy when he joined the board, “but I have been impressed with what I’ve seen.” He added: “Dr. Murphy has navigated some choppy waters for us.”

Summers, who voted yes, said that student test scores have been elevated, the facilities have been improved, the schools are safe havens for the students, and the district’s budget has been in balance for several years. “He’s doing the job. Sure, he ticks me off sometimes, too, but he’s doing the job. To look for a new superintendent costs the district a lot of money. I’m going to vote yes.”

Bailey, who voted yes for the extension a year ago, said she was voting no this time, largely because of financial uncertainty and because of the message it conveys to the community.

She said she has an issue with long-term contracts that limit the flexibility to act. As an example, she cited board discussions about the viability of declaring a wage freeze until they realized that, because of employment contracts, “only 5 percent of our wages would be subject to a freeze.” She concluded: “I support Dr. Murphy, but we have a fiduciary obligation to the community.”

Lockhart said that extending the contract was a vote of confidence in the superintendent and his administrative team. “I vote yes,” she declared.

After the vote, Murphy thanked the board members for their confidence in him and said he appreciates “the opportunity to continue to provide a public service.”

Charles Bartling

A resident of Evanston since 1975, Chuck Bartling holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and has extensive experience as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers, radio...

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17 Comments

  1. We the People or We the Government ?

    My comments from last night – people spoke, called, e-mailed most on the board DID NOT listen:
    I would like to start by thanking Dr. Murphy for his leadership and for the outstanding efforts demonstrated by many teachers in District 65. To all D65 employees who strive for excellence and challenge all students to achieve their potential I say thank you.
    The issue at hand is the request by Dr. Murphy to extend his contract for another year.
    I am opposed for 3 reasons; Timing, Governance, and Fiscal Responsibility.
    #1 Timing – Why do we need to extend the contract at this time? You may recall this is the 3rd extension in 18 months; Dec 2008, August 2009 and Now. Recently, 29 teachers were RIFFED – what’s the message to them? What does this suggest to the remaining staff ? Many people in our community have lost jobs and there are few opportunities, businesses are struggling, real estate foreclosures continue and our state’s economy is weak. Just look at the vacancies in downtown Evanston. Dr. Murphy has 4 years remaining on his contract which demonstrates the board’s and community’s commitment to his leadership. He is privileged to have a 4 year contract – many taxpayers don’t have jobs and are worried. I don’t see why Dr. Murphy should feel entitled to another contract extension. When my son asked for a new bike, because his friend got a new bike, I just said no- and told him he should be happy he’s got a bike. This board should exercise similar good judgment.
    # 2 Governance – Government was formed to serve the people, yet today it seems like the people are working to serve the government. Are the schools working to serve our community or is our community working to serve the schools? A 5 year contract means the School Board is working for the Superintendent instead of the Superintendent working for the School Board and Community. This extension would exceed the terms for ALL 7 sitting board members. This is NOT good board governance.
    I would add that I do not support Dr. Witherspoon’s contract extension for the same reason.
    #3 Fiscal Responsibility – A 5 year contract creates a million dollar liability for our community. Who on the Board can tell me where this district is going to be in 5 years? How about 3? The world is rapidly changing – just think about what has happened over the last year – who predicted this major recession? BP’s oil spill? The volcanic eruption in Iceland? My point is that there is a lot of uncertainty, and maintaining flexibility is in the best interests of our community. A 5 year contract doesn’t give us flexibility.
    Think about the massive fiscal problems in Illinois. Did you know that our state was just downgraded by 2 rating agencies? Our state’s budget deficit is $13 B and we have one of our nation’s largest unfunded pension liabilities. In addition, we have about $25 B of debt. Think about it for a minute. Why is this important for Dr. Murphy’s contract discussion? The reason is District 65 is going to be receiving less money from the state in the future NOT more – Today’s Wall Street Journal article highlights and describes the fiscal nightmare in Illinois. Committing to a 5 year contract exposes Evanston taxpayers to significant and unnecessary risk.
    Tonight, we the people, have spoken, but the Board has the vote. Please vote NO. It’s not the right time, it’s poor governance, it’s fiscally irresponsible.
    And remember, we the people, have the vote on April 5, 2011.
  2. I hope there will be change on the D65 board

    Just the mention of a pay raise and an extension of his five year contract in this economic environment, shows Dr. Hardy Murphy is clueless and careless.

    As my wife so aptly said – "It’s disgusting."

    And yet, the Board gave him a contract extension!!! And for what! Murphy, who makes six figures, recently opted to overlook principal candidates with decades of managerial experience and hire principals with no leadership experience. The Lincolnwood principal began his education career 10 years ago.

    In this buyer’s market of quality proven candidates, Murphy gives us people with untested skills with no leadership experience.

    What has Murphy done to deserve the contract extension? It was really disconcerting that once the new board members were elected the first order of business was to extend Murphy’s contract five years. I still get bent out of shape when I think about what some of these board members told parents when they suddenly changed school hours last year – "it’s not good for your kids to get up earlier"’ – my favorite. 

    I hope folks like Rhonda Present and others who have common sense organize and plan to run for the School Board. More than ever, Evanston parents and kids need you!

  3. My Comments From Last Night

    During the Informal Presentations from the Public (Agenda Item 27), this is what I said to the School Board:

     

    My name is Christine Wolf, and I am the mother of a soon to be 7th grader at Nichols, a 5th grader at Washington and a 2nd grader at Washington.

    In a former life, I worked as a teacher in another Illinois suburb.  Many times, I overheard disparaging comments about the Evanston public schools, most notably, how "everyone knows how abysmal the Evanston Public Schools are."

     

    My husband and I took a leap of faith sending our children to this district.  Though I worked as a teacher, I have found, as a District 65 parent, I sleep best at night forgoing my career aspirations and investing my efforts by supporting and supplementing our children’s education.  I do this by helping at the schools they attend.  What I have seen is:

     

    –Our teachers being stretched beyond their limits,

    –Our families working as hard as they can to afford life in Evanston

    –Our children being deeply touched by the uncertainty of these times.  They pick up on the (for lack of a better word) "vibe" of the community around them.  And regarding the topic of Dr. Murphy’s contract being extended beyond the 4 years already agreed upon, the "vibe" I feel is, frankly, one of greed.

    I am a mother of children in District 65.  I am, more importantly, a mother.  I want to teach my children good values, send them noble messages, and model admirable behavior.  When I tuck them in at night, I listen to their opinions before they sleep.  Many times their comments are hard to take or unrealistic.  But when it comes down to it, I have vowed to be their advocate.  I will help them if a bully harasses them.  I will conference with a teacher if a grade or a behavior is in question.  I will LISTEN to their concerns and act upon them.

    Similarly, our community has elected this Board of Education to LISTEN to our concerns, and (aside from Ms. Quattrocki and Ms. Bailey), I feel my emails, my questions, and my concerns have fallen on deaf ears.

    Dr. Murphy, your work has been well noted and complimented tonight — as it should.  But I am insulted that our School Board’s time and energy repeatedly focuses on the topic of renewing your contract before its due time.  Yes, you’ve done great things for our district.  Thank you.  But so many of us do more than our share to make this district what it is.  After all the discussion tonight, I STILL have no idea what criterion is used to evaluate your performance.  I’m stunned it all still feels like a secret.  Transparency would be appreciated.

    Finally, I’m disappointed to hear Board members commend you for not having had a pay raise in over a year.  I haven’t ever had one.  However, I love my job nurturing children in District 65.  And in these tenuous times, I wish I felt your heart was on the same page as mine.

  4.  I was stunned that these

     I was stunned that these elected officials had the gaul to "vote" yes (barring two members) after every single citizen who spoke out about this contract at the meeting made a compelling case as to why it was not appropriate at this time to offer another one year extension on an already generous contract. Yet these board members showed a blatant & disgraceful disregard for the wishes of the overwhelming majority of people in our community. Shame on them and shame on anyone who votes for any of them again as our public servants.

  5. Notes on a successful teacher Jaime Escalante

    With all the comments about the contract extension, salary increases, housing subsidy, one hour school days, wasted last week at end of year, etc., I thought about the recent death of Jaime Escalante the hero of the movie "Stand and Deliever."

      A few comments made in the press were:

    New York Times

    Jaime Escalante, the high school teacher whose ability to turn out high-achieving calculus students from a poor Hispanic neighborhood in East Los Angeles inspired the 1988 film “Stand and Deliver,” with Edward James Olmos in the starring role, died Tuesday at his son’s home in Rosedale, Calif. He was 79 and lived in Cochabamba, Bolivia. 

    “He was working with a group of students who did not have much in life,” said Erika T. Camacho, who took algebra with Mr. Escalante and now teaches mathematics at Arizona State University. “They were told that they were not good enough and would not amount to much. He told them that with desire and discipline, they could do anything.” 

    Beginning with five calculus students in 1978, Mr. Escalante developed a program that eventually attracted hundreds of students keen to go on to college. In 1988, 443 students took the College Board’s advanced placement test; 266 passed.

    Success, acclaim and the celebrity status that came with “Stand and Deliver” brought strife. Mr. Escalante butted heads with the school’s administration and fellow teachers, some jealous of his fame, others worried that he was creating his own fief. The teacher’s union demanded that his oversubscribed calculus classes be brought down in size.

    In 1991, Mr. Escalante left Garfield to teach at Hiram Johnson High School in Sacramento. Without him, Garfield’s calculus program withered. In 2001 he retired and returned to Bolivia.

    Mr. Escalante always impressed on his students the importance of “ganas” — desire. “I’ll make a deal with you,” he once told his class. “I’ll teach you math, and that’s your language. You’re going to go to college and sit in the first row, not in the back, because you’re going to know more than anybody.” 

    Beginning with five calculus students in 1978, Mr. Escalante developed a program that eventually attracted hundreds of students keen to go on to college. In 1988, 443 students took the College Board’s advanced placement test; 266 passed. 

    ===============

    LA Times

    Escalante was a maverick who did not get along with many of his public school colleagues, but he mesmerized students with his entertaining style and deep understanding of math. Educators came from around the country to observe him at Garfield, which built one of the largest and most successful Advanced Placement programs in the nation.

    "Jaime Escalante has left a deep and enduring legacy in the struggle for academic equity in American education," said Gaston Caperton, former West Virginia governor and president of the College Board, which sponsors the Scholastic Assessment Test and the Advanced Placement exams.

    "His passionate belief [was] that all students, when properly prepared and motivated, can succeed at academically demanding course work, no matter what their racial, social or economic background. Because of him, educators everywhere have been forced to revise long-held notions of who can succeed."

    Escalante’s rise came during an era decried by experts as one of alarming mediocrity in the nation’s schools. He pushed for tougher standards and accountability for students and educators, often irritating colleagues and parents along the way with his brusque manner and uncompromising stands.

    He was called a traitor for his opposition to bilingual education. He said the hate mail he received for championing Proposition 227, the successful 1998 ballot measure to dismantle bilingual programs in California, was a factor in his decision to retire that year after leaving Garfield and teaching at Hiram Johnson High School in Sacramento for seven years.

    ========================

    Another story, the source I don’t recall, said that the school’s opposition to him and his methods and that they thought they could duplicate his success themselves, caused him to leave.  In a very short time the school reverted to what it was before he came—a failure.  

    1. Stand and Deliver, huh?

      Interesting apples and oranges analogy to Jaime Escalante, though it begs one question: who is Dr. Murphy mesmerizing? In Mr. Escalante’s case, his students’ scores were the measurement used to gauge his success and certainly Dr. Murphy is quick to trumpet his success in closing the achievement gap, as well he should.

      Yet that is only one aspect of his job and it is in the other issues of the district’s maintenance, notably autonomous decision-making, special education, enrichment, school safety, the jettisoning of so very many principals, and failure to answer to a truly accountable assessment plan ("There is no plan"?!?) that so many last night took issue with and why they pleaded with the school board to simply hold up on the rubber-stamping of another contract extension. Apparently, most on the board just couldn’t help themselves.

      "Absolute power corrupts absolutely," Lord Acton once famously said and what the board has granted Dr. Murphy is political and educational capital that would cause many a dictator’s mouth to foam with envy. To hold him to no real assessment plan (and, remember, it is Dr. Murphy who has pushed so hard to hold all of District 65’s teachers accountable to a detailed and troubled evaluation package) and to grant him extensions that outlive all of the current board members terms should very well cause consternation among Evanstonians and draw the type of crowd that JEH saw last night.

      At the heart of this issue, then, is not economics, personality, race, or even education. but rather democracy. Far from mesmerized, the citizens of Evanston showed up in force last night in an effort to participate in the future of their school district and were plainly told "No thanks, we’re good" by the majority of a school board that noted that it would be very inconvenient to have to look for a new superintendent; never mind that they would have had at least three years to accomplish this part of their job description.

      On April 5, 2011, Evanstonians get a chance to vote for the future of three of these apparently tired school board members. Let’s hope they turn out in large numbers again and seize a rare chance to participate in real democracy in District 65.

  6. contract extension

    One wonders why Murphy feels the need to push for an extension every year.

    If we live in the best of all possible school districts — stay tuned for the color newsletter from the District (yep, you paid for it) bragging on the virtues of schooling in D65 — then why the need to ask for an extension every year?

    Votes of confidence work both ways. Hardy Murphy has shown he does not have faith in this community, certainly not to the extent of putting his performance and community-building abilities on the line during the next year of what will be some truly agonizing budgeting choices. I foresee another year of divide-and-conquer. Will our school board grow a spine? Don’t hold your breath.

  7. My letter to the Board after the vote to extend Murphy’s contrac

    To the Board and Dr Murphy:

     
    I am sure you are not surprised that the many parents who expressed their concern about Dr Murphy’s contract extension last night are feeling profoundly disenfranchised today. The speakers consistently stated that their point of view was not a denial of Dr Murphy’s achievements, many even acknowledged and thanked him for his work.  Yet at least three of the board members (Mr Terry, Mr Summers and Mr Lockhart) used their voting statements to defend Dr Murphy’s accomplishments as if they had been attacked and to articulate a perpetual five year contact as simply something "he deserves" because "(you)choose Dr. Murphy."   Mr Pigozzi at least tried to explain the rationale behind a long term rolling contract. Sadly there is no security for the community when a superintendent has a long term contract because the superintendent can resign at any time. There is only security for the superintendent and a lack of options for the community. Ms Weaver attempted to explain the process she and the board undertook to reach their decision and quite frankly that was an eye opener.
     
    So now we know that there are annual goals set for Dr Murphy and that, in the Board’s judgement, he has exceeded them for the past school year.  If the Board is in compliance with IASB standards on those goals then they must be related to student achievement metrics set by the Board.  While it is understandable that leadership competency related performance discussions would be handled in executive session, what harm could there be in sharing the student achievement goals you set for Dr Murphy in past and future years and reporting to the public his achievement of those goals? Based on the votes of five Board members last night it would seem that releasing that information could only have a positive effect:
    • It would help the community understand your decision and why five of you are so confident that a rolling five year contract is necessary
    • It would help the Board demonstrate their management of Dr Murphy on the community’s behalf which is your primary role and for many of us seems in doubt at this point 
    • It would stimulate a healthy discussion about the student achievement we as a community value and would allow us to feel some shared ownership of those goals
    On the flip side, keeping those goals behind the curtain of executive session can only generate suspicion and mistrust in the Board’s judgment. Please consider making public the past and present annual student achievement goals and performance metrics you have used to evaluate Dr Murphy.  Since, according to Board members’ statements last night they are consistently favorable, they can only serve the effect of sharing good news, increasing pride in our community and strengthening the community’s trust in the Board.
     
    Finally a point on keeping order in the meeting. It was a lively crowd last night and I am sure at times that was intimidating. When those there to oppose an extension applauded you allowed a reasonable time for us to express our support for those of the same view.  When some called out in frustration to oppose what was being said by the Board Mr Terry you were very quick to reprimand people. However these rules of order were not evenly applied. Sitting in the front row on the Board’s right was a district employee and former Board member (who identified herself as such to those sitting behind her) and another person who may also be a district employee. They interrupted formal speakers at the start of the meeting several times. They spoke directly to the Board during the community members’ three minutes often in derisive tones implying the speakers were uninformed.  Mr Terry never once did you reprimand them, in fact you reprimanded one of the speakers for responding to them.  Then during a break you waved, smiled and said hello to those same hecklers.  The behavior they demonstrated would not be tolerated from students at a school assembly. Why did you tolerate it from a district employee directed at members of the community? Putting rules of order aside, their behavior was just plain bad manners and we should expect more of our district employees.
     
    I hope you will consider making student achievement goals for Dr Murphy public as a way forward to repair the estrangement between the Board and a large portion of the community.
     
    Thank you for your time, your attention and your long hours of service to the community’s students and families.
     
  8. I attended the board meeting

    I attended the board meeting on Monday night. I feel completely let down, unheard and embarrassed by those we elected to our school board. I am equally disturbed by Dr. Murphy’s smug attitude and sense of entitlement.

    I won’t waste my time writing more…only Tracy Quattracki would listen and respond anyway. 

    1. Oh, please don’t have the

      Oh, please don’t have the attitude that you won’t write them more…..I agree that Tracy is the most astute and the only independent thinker.  But instead of not writing the board because you believe that they are not listening, I suggest writing them more!  All of the speakers at Mondays school baord meeting, who addressed Dr. Murphy’s extension, took the high road and didn’t tackle all of the topics that he has mishandled.  They spoke of the unfairness of giving anyone a five year job security when the frontline staff are not priveledged to have such a thing.  And they spoke of his agreement outliving any of the current board members.  But the board kept saying that he is doing a fine job!  It’s time for the board to hear from more parents and staff about their concerns!  And I wish that staff would write to the board, anonymously, telling them the real story!!!

    2. Dr.Murphy always displays a

      Dr.Murphy always displays a smug…I’m beter than you attitude, at Board Meetings, meetings with teachers and with parents.  He has done many things to better our schools…I just can’t support his contract being extended for the many reasons stated at the Monday meeting.  I am also concerned by the turn over of prinicpals and those being appointed.  I feel he is just looking for puppets that will do as he says instead of having a backbone…but then again our Board Members, minus 2, don’t have backbones.

      1. Is it too much to believe

        that people who disagree with you may not be backbone-less, stupid or any of the other things the board members have been accused of?  Perhaps they just disagree with you.  As do many parents and staff.  You are entitled to your opinion but so are others.

        1. It is not too much to believe

          It is not too much to believe that people’s opinions often differ. It is, however, too much to accept that officials, elected to represent the views and voices of their constituents, blatanly disregard the wishes of the vast majority of this community.

          If the best arguments put for Mr. Terry can be summed up with,  "we don’t want to look for another Superintendant" and I’d rather have Dr. Murphy than Dr. Jekyll" than those in support of this agenda had better come up with a more compelling, intellegent & well thought out explanation as to why the continue to vote against the consensus of the people they we’re elected to represent.

          As Mr. Terry snapped, "you want a method… we don’t have a method!". May I suggest we adapt the exhaustive Danielson Method that Mr. Murphy felt was so very imperitive to put into place for evaluating our own teachers.

        2. I can believe…

          … that there are a number of people in the community who fully supported the Board’s decision to extend Dr. Murphy’s contract.  They certainly didn’t make themselves prominently seen or heard at the last meeting, but I am sure they are out there.

          But when I hear that dozens of phone calls and emails were received by D65 Board members, and they ran almost unanimously against the extension, that says something to me.  When I hear how strongly opposed nearly everyone I have spoken to (at all sorts of occasions– soccer games, parties, out shopping, etc.) is about this issue, it tells me that five Board members seem to have voted against the wishes of a majority of the voters in our community. 

          Perhaps you disagree with this and think that the anti-extension crowd represents a loud but insignificant minority of the community.  If we get some candidates representing both perspectives in next April’s Board election, I think we will see which group represents a majority of us.

  9. Letter sent to Kim Weaver

    While watching the District 65 Board meeting I was so angry at some comments that Board Member Weaver made I sent her an email and shared it with some fellow parents. They have encouraged me to post it. The following is a portion of the email I sent to Board Member Weaver.

    Dear Ms. Weaver:

    I have been watching the School Board meeting tonight on public access and must respond to something that I just heard you say. Your comment was after the controller of the Board presented the budget and Ms. Bailey discussed why there were no questions from the board. You then made a comment which was something to the effect of:

                Well half the people have left, how surprising – and this is something that is really important.

    It was said smugly and sarcastically.

    In full disclosure I was against the contract extension, wrote you an email noting so and totally disagree with everything that was said to rationalize the vote today by you and the other board members who voted for it. But to tell you the truth it did not make me angry. The Board has the right to vote the way it wants and we as the electorate have to accept it until the next election. However the comment you just made really makes me angry and embarrassed that I voted for you.

    It is my opinion, and probably that of both supporters and detractors of Dr. Murphy, the contract term of the Superintendant is a very important issue. It is probably the most important decision that a School Board can make. And for you to make a comment that minimizes the people who came to let you know their feeling is not just insulting to them, but to the entire community.

    While I disagree with the board members who voted for the contract extension tonight most of them at least had the sense to thank the people who spoke and for that I respect them. For you to basically mock the people who came out tonight is appalling and I think you owe this community an apology.

    Alan Schoen

    Evanston, IL.

     

  10. The fact that Dr. Murphy is

    The fact that Dr. Murphy is not getting a raise is supposed to placate those of us who are not happy with his extended tenure.  Thousands of teachers are being laid off and faculty and administration in higher education are taking furlough days.  The fact that he is not getting a raise is supposed to be news?  The fact that he is whining about not getting a raise IS NEWSWORTHY.  It makes me think he is detached from reality.

  11. Why Stop There?

    Why not extend Dr. Sandra Cole’s consulting contract for 5 years?  Hardy and Sandra can then continue to partner in their efforts to eliminate Park School…the jewel in the city’s crown…

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