With Dave Thomas and Jennifer Gottlieb off the dais, two seats are open for appointment.
We need one more seat. Maureen (corruption? What corruption?) Dinnen’s.
Dinnen has shown nothing but a tin ear and blind eye when it came to the shenanigans in the district.
And she’s shown incomprehensible ineptness when it comes down to the largest boondoggle in county history, the renovation of Ft. Lauderdale High School.
Dinnen herself sponsored a charette to deal with the already overdue and out of budget project in 2005, alerting me to the issue.
Six years later it still isn’t complete and at the very least $10 million over budget.
That’s how much my Board gave her to complete the project.
The Board needs that third seat. The taxpayers need that third seat.
But let’s all step back and take a look at where we are.
I’ve been hearing some really good things from other Board members, though.
During workshops and even during regular meetings, I’ve been hearing lots of questions.
The right questions. Skeptical questions.
Not the crap minutia that resounded too loudly when I was on the Board.
Way too much of that was so that Board members could sound like they were on the ball when they weren’t.
Among those asking the right questions were Dave Thomas, Nora Rupert, Patti Good, Laurie Levinson and Robin Bartleman.
And from member Thomas, for the first time in collective memory, we’ve heard a perfectly stated intent to hold the Superintendent wholly accountable for inaction when it comes to correcting audit exceptions.
But with his stepping down, we have less than an activist majority.
The Board absolutely must not only have a majority, but a super majority when it comes to holding staff accountable.
One of the questions the candidates for Superintendent must be asked is; “How will you hold subordinates accountable and are you willing to provide weekly reports to the Board?”
Meanwhile, I fully expect that Ann Murray will be elected Chair in November.
Regardless, the next Chair absolutely MUST hold the Superintendent accountable on every level no matter where or when.
Williams couldn’t do it.
Dinnen and Gallagher had no intention of doing it.
Gottlieb couldn’t do it, either.
That’s why the Board must have a super majority with the activist mindset.
And contrary to what the grand jury says:
1001.32 (2) DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARD.—In accordance with the provisions of s. 4(b) of Art. IX of the State Constitution, district school boards shall operate, control, and supervise all free public schools in their respective districts and may exercise any power except as expressly prohibited by the State Constitution or general law.(emphasis, mine)
It’s long past time the district had an activist School Board that held subordinates accountable.
And it starts with the Superintendent.