Monthly Archives: May 2017
Why is there an All Boards Chairmen Committee when they hardly EVER meet? Reply
5/24/2017 ABC Meeting CANCELLED
4/26/2017 ABC Committee Meeting CANCELLED
3/6/2017 Joint Meeting between ABC Committee and REG 1 BOE: Meeting Held
2/22/2017 ABC Committee Meeting CANCELLED
1/25/2017 ABC Committee Meeting CANCELLED
The A.B.C. fought long and hard to wrestle away control of the superintendent from the Region One Board Of Education..spending way to much time in the process and way to much money only to then, this school year, cancel four out of five meetings!
The only meeting so far this year was a joint meeting with the Region One BOE! What could they have possibly talked about when the rest of this year they never even met!
This is disgraceful, why run for the board of education, then become chairmen of the local board, and then continually NOT SHOW UP FOR ANY MEETINGS?
As the old saying goes, “is this anyway to run a railroad?”
So now, the superintendent has NO OVERSIGHT from a group of people who wanted oversight. So let me remind the A.B.C. what the meaning of OVERSIGHT is:
Falls Village Board Of Education May 2, 2017 Reply
2+2 Does Not Equal 4 In The Level 3 Grievance Against Pam Vogel…. 1
The Region One Report broke the news of the Region One Board Of Education denying the Level 3 Grievance against Pam Vogel. In response to that news story, Marshall Miles received two responses from Region One Board Of Education members.
Comment one was from past Chairman, and current Kent member of the board Jonathan Moore, his condescending comment:Babble, babble.
Comment two from Sharon representative to the board Bob Whelan, his comment:
Bob Whelan’s response to my story: If one reviews all the documents presented, it is clear that:
1- The complainant did not present any evidence other than hearsay from ostensibly a witness that was not even in the room.
2- The witness, a person who ‘overheard’ the conversation did not even present an affidavit to validate the claim.
3 – Describing that someone is or was out on ‘medical leave’ is not a HIPAA violation – the attorney for the Union admitted as much in the hearing, and apparently there is nothing in John/Jane Doe’s personnel file that even speaks to the circumstances around the original request for medical leave, and John/Jane Doe makes it clear in their statement they have never had any direct interaction with Dr. Vogel.
4 – There is no language in the Teacher contract regarding reasons for the prosecution of grievances that had anything to do with this type of circumstance. The next possible step would be for the Union to bring the grievance to mediation/arbitration, but it is not likely that would change the outcome for all the reasons above. The decision of the Region One Board was unanimous to deny the grievance.
After reviewing the comments from Sharon Region One Board Of Education member Bob Whelan, I decided to contact the HVRFA and ask them about the points Mr. Whelan raised in response to my story on the Region One Board Of Education denying the Level 3 Grievance against Pam Vogel.
The Association provided me with the following response to Mr. Whelan’s post:
1) Mr. Whelan has no idea what is in the teacher’s personnel file as he does not have access to it.
2) Had he access to the teacher’s personnel file, Mr. Whelan would know that there exists a note, composed on physician’s letterhead, indicating that physician’s specialty and that leave was medically necessary.
3) While we cannot state definitively how Ms. Vogel might have known about the teacher’s leave, the fact that she discussed it indicates that she did know.
4) An affidavit was not presented because it would need to be signed; based on past behavior, it was CEA’s opinion that there was cause for concern about retaliation against the witness.
5) Dr. Vogel acknowledged that she spoke about the teacher’s leave with her consultant, claiming that what she said was not as specific. The Board appears to have ignored this fact.
In my eyes(Marshall Miles) this raises even more questions!
1) How does he (Mr.Whelan)know about the file if he does not have access to it?
2) Did he have access to it?
3) When Pam Vogel admitted that she spoke about the teacher’s leave,then that item should have opened an additional investigation by the board to find out exactly what she said, when she said it, and WHY she said it at all.
This should not become another series of events by a Region One
administration official that should be swept under the rug, and put into a dark room. It is the boards responsibility to oversee the administration…lets see some of that oversight.
As to Mr. Moore’s comments, the board Chairman should have Mr.Moore apologize for being rude, condescending, and not acting in the best interests of the board.
With public questions arising about Assistant Superintendent Pam Vogel’s role and handling of the scheduling conflicts at H.V.R.H.S., it’s teachers and lack of transparancy with the public, we found this information particularly pertinent to the current administrative situation in Region One, and as we have been asked to inform the public of this ongoing process by the HVRFA, we are making this serious complaint public: Reply
On Wednesday evening, we received this email and attachments from the Housatonic Valley regional Faculty Association:
This evening the HVRFA met with the Region 1 BOE to present a Level 3 Grievance. The grievance was filed on behalf of a teacher identified as Jane/John Doe, and based on the sensitive nature of the contents of this grievance, the teacher’s name and a course name that might be attached to that teacher was redacted.
Region One Board Of Education Meeting May 1, 2017 Reply
YES:488 — NO:450 The Story Behind The Numbers Reply
488-450 The Region One Budget passes by 38 votes.
Here is the story behind the numbers.
It’s never a good thing when the public is pushed into voting NO on a budget to prove a point. Well, I dare say, that this year,at least the budget did not have to be defeated to prove that point.
And that point is….the new administration,before taking full control, has lost the support of darn near 50% of taxpayers, an ominous sign.
This was NEVER a vote on the budget. It was a no-confidence vote on the incoming administration and Region One Board Of Education. Before they even take full control of Region One, the incoming Vogel-Carter administration has lost the confidence of almost half of the voters in Region One.
A 48% disapproval rating! It is clear there will be no honeymoon.
And board members in Sharon, Falls Village, North Canaan and Kent have spoken…they do not like the way their representatives are acting in their behalf.Thats 4 of the six towns.
That is a disapproval rating of about 66% of the Region One Board.
The bar has now been set, and it is a high one for the new incoming administration and the Region One Board.
Enough is enough. Open up the process, include teachers, and keep the public better informed.Respond to taxpayers directly, and show concern and transparency when dealing with us all.
We deserve better from you.
This vote is not the end, to be honest, it is just the beginning.
We dare say Kent will now revisit the practice of “appointing” a Region One BOE member instead of “electing”.
We dare say voters in Sharon, Falls Village and North Canaan will expect better of their next board members.
And we dare say the Vogel-Carter administration is off to a very rocky start…months before they take their new positions.
The lessons learned from the people who fought for teachers, students and taxpayers will not be forgotten..as a matter of fact,they have only just begun.
We, the public,are now not only watching…but are involved.
And so far..we do not like what we see. We hope to see a change in attitude.
Region One Budget Vote Results
Salisbury 196 YES 60 NO
Sharon 68 YES 92 NO
Falls Village 33 YES 51 NO
North Canaan 60 YES 94 NO
Kent 50 YES 106 NO
Cornwall 81 YES 47 NO
TOTAL YES 488 NO 450
For the future, for the students, for the teachers, for the parents…VOTE NO today! Reply
Its quite simple. To retain ANY leverage with a stubborn BOE and administration vote NO today in the Region One Budget vote. Pressure must be brought to show we mean business. This is your only recourse to get your feelings across.
A NO VOTE on the budget May 2 could save us thousands of dollars in legal fees downthe road…. Reply
Lest anyone forget this story from March 7, 2017…..LEGAL ACTION AGAINST THE REGION ONE BOE IS POSSIBLE IF YOU VOTE YES ON THIS BUDGET. With your NO vote tomorrwo there will be time to see what schedule is being set for next year, We can use the NO VOTE as leverage to slow this process down, and include teachers in the process!
The investment now of a NO VOTE could save us thousands of dollars in legal fees.
From the Rpublican-American March 7, 2017
FALLS VILLAGE – The possibility of legal action has crept into the issue of the proposal to institute a modified 4 x 4 block schedule at Housatonic Valley Regional High School.
In a letter sent Monday by the school’s faculty association to the Region 1 school board, Elizabeth Foulds, association president, noted that she sent an email on Feb. 23 on behalf of the organization to Superintendent Patricia Chamberlain and all board members pertaining to the proposed schedule. It contained pertinent data and information members had gathered. She added that on several occasions, association members requested information and data regarding the schedule change, but nothing was provided. She said the group’s intent was not only to share information, but also to reaffirm its desire to work with the board, administrators and stakeholders to improve student achievement.
Foulds also wrote that one board member responded to the email, characterizing the association’s communication as an attempt to interfere with administrative issues and urging fellow board members to discuss the correspondence with the board’s attorney. She noted that the board member also threatened to call for board action at Monday’s meeting if Foulds attempted to communicate with the board on the association’s behalf. Foulds had read a letter at the Feb. 6 board meeting that listed many questions the faculty had about the scheduling plan.
Foulds countered that she has both a right and a duty to explain concerns of the membership to the board and administrators.
“Representatives from Connecticut Education Association’s legal department have advised us that, contrary to this board member’s response, it is not illegal for me in my role as president of the HVRFA to ask questions on behalf of the association, nor is it illegal for me to share information on the association’s behalf with the administration and the board,” Foulds wrote. “It is illegal, however, for any member of the Board of Education to threaten the association for acting within its statutorily protected rights. Suggesting that the board consult its attorney constitutes an attempt to threaten the association for engaging in lawful association activities. A board member responding in this manner interferes with the legal rights of the association to conduct its business and such interference is unacceptable.”
The letter adds, “Any further attempts to interfere with the legitimate function of the HVRFA will be met with the strongest possible response from the association. That is, the association will pursue any and all legal remedies available to it should there be continued attempts by any member of the Region 1 Board of Education to interfere with its legal rights and obligations.”