Some of it well deserved, and some of it not.
With the arrest and conviction of Bev Gallahger along with the arrest of Stephanie Kraft, the die is cast.
Even if Kraft is judged not guilty, the images are none-the-less set in stone.
Although hundreds of millions in wasted construction according to only some in the media is still a crock of you-know-what, along with a highly flawed grand jury report, that image is set in stone, too.
The die is cast and the reality is that there is a sickness within that must be dealt with.
Incompetent, unmotivated and even graft ridden senior management, lazy, unproductive staff, back biting, bumping of good employees by bad ones and yes, bad teachers are a stark reality.
Don’t get me wrong here.
There are plenty of good, hardworking teachers along with members of staff and management, but their reputations are being completely sullied by the former.
Hiring a spin doctor won’t solve the problems.
Buddy Nevins is right on the money when he comments that the Board has suffered from a “bunker mentality.”
Almost a year of overpayments with nothing being done.
Eight years of zero progress on a project that would insure continued operations during a disastrous event.
Years of overspending on some construction projects but no completion.
Bad land deals.
Corrupt senior staff signing off on contracts or payments not approved by the Board.
Extreme cases of nepotism and sexual harassment.
More than $1 million in “missing” inventory.
Employees using pencil filled time cards stealing time.
And yes, even a Superintendent who refused to fire at least one senior staffer caught in the act of bid rigging and taking graft.
All the while, the Board took that “bunker mentality.”
The only visible response? “Corruption? What corruption?”
Those School Boards for the most part, are history along with not one, but two Superintendents who couldn’t or wouldn’t control subordinates.
No, it’s not the right time to hire a spin doctor at all.
When will it be the right time?
But certainly not before union contracts are renegotiated to remove things like bump clauses.
Certainly not before mass firings of bad teachers and staffers and the expected union protests.
And certainly not before unfair step scales are removed and replaced with real percentage wage increases.
Only when those take precedence in the news rather than scandal after scandal should the idea of a spin doctor come to the floor for debate.
Only when the public perceives that the district is making a real effort to reduce and control expenses and spending taxpayer money wisely should the idea of a spin doctor come to the floor for debate.