Indiana, PA - Indiana County

DOUG STEVE: Board priorities questioned

on September 01, 2013 2:00 AM

School started Tuesday in Indiana but teaching positions approved to be filled at the June 24 board meeting are still vacant. At that meeting in June, the board approved posting for the math and guidance counselor positions at the senior high plus two part-time music positions for the district.

The interviews for the senior high math position just started late last week after in-service days had already begun. The board waited until the night before classes started to hire a guidance counselor. Since the counselor currently works in another district, it may be as long as 60 days before they start their position in Indiana. What about the music positions? All of these positions should have been filled in early August, at the latest, to allow the new hires time to prepare for the school year.

Instead of making sure the school year started with these positions filled, this board’s leadership felt it was more important to go around to other school districts’ board meetings pushing the Challenger Learning Center.

There are also new courses that were approved through the Academic Committee last winter, but the curriculum has still not been written. So school has started and these courses are being taught with no approved curriculum on file. Does that sound acceptable?

We also have an asbestos issue at Eisenhower, Ben Franklin and Horace Mann that was not taken care of this summer. How long before the asbestos issue gets taken care of?

At the last Buildings and Grounds Committee meeting when the administration said it would have figures and information on asbestos removal for next summer available in November, Walter Schroth, chair of the committee, said he needed it in September. Why demand September? Could it be a political move to get information out before the November election since Mr. Schroth is in a battle with Dr. John Uccellini for the final board seat?

At Monday’s board meeting, more time was spent debating PennDOT’s proposed roundabout than making sure staff were in place for the school year. Where are this board’s priorities?

Doug Steve


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