Group begins recall process

Committee submits petition to recall John DeVincentis

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  • The petition

    The following is the petition language that was submitted to the Routt County Clerk and Recorder's Office on Tuesday:

    Since being elected to the RE-2 Board of Education, John DeVincentis has engaged in a pattern of conduct that has interfered with the orderly and civil operation of the Board. He has offended, insulted, and/or intimidated other members of the board, the district staff and the public. The lack of character exhibited and language used in his 2004-2005 e-mails further illustrates a behavior pattern that is unacceptable in the position of a school board member.

    John DeVincentis has lost the respect and trust of this community, and because of his actions the District may be in jeopardy of losing the ability to attract and retain talented teachers and administrators. The RE-2 School District faces many challenges in desperate need of attention. Those issues cannot be properly addressed with John DeVincentis in office.

    The RE-2 School District deserves a Board composed of impartial, fair-minded citizens who are able to conduct the business of the district in the best interest of the students. John DeVincentis' past and present actions as well as his unwillingness to resign have demonstrated his desire to place his own interests above those of the students.

    Vote YES to recall John DeVincentis.

    A committee calling itself "Save Our Schools RE-2" submitted petition language Tuesday seeking to recall John DeVincentis from the Steamboat Springs School Board.

    The committee submitted the petition language to the Routt County Clerk's Office.

    Pat Gleason, one of the committee members and a former School Board member, said the group has taken the time it needed to get the petition in order.

    "We're moving forward with this civil exercise," he said. "People have been wondering what's going on, but we needed to take to make sure we were doing everything legally and taking the appropriate measures."

    Others involved in the recall effort include former School Board members Paula Stephenson, Jim Gill and Tom Miller-Freutel and former Parents for Dr. D chairman Jim Swiggart. The committee plans to host an open planning meeting about the recall effort at 7 p.m. May 10 in Centennial Hall.

    Gleason sent the petition language to the Steamboat Pilot & Today, calling for the community's support to recall DeVincentis based on his past actions, which included sending a series of e-mails harshly critical of former school district Superintendent Cyndy Simms. The e-mails were sent by DeVincentis during his final year as Strawberry Park Elementary School principal in 2004-05.

    Gleason gained access to the e-mails during his tenure n the School Board and gave the e-mails to the Pilot & Today. Gleason resigned from the School Board the day before the newspaper published a story about the e-mails.

    DeVincentis "has engaged in a pattern of conduct that has interfered with the orderly and civil operation of the Board. He has offended, insulted and/or intimidated other members of the board, the district staff and the public," the petition claims. "John DeVincentis' past and present actions as well as his unwillingness to resign have demonstrated his desire to place his own interest above those of the students."

    In the e-mails, DeVincentis admits he lied to Mercer Island School Board members about Simms, made suggestions how to undermine Simms and made personal attacks on her character and her family.

    DeVincentis has publicly apologized for the e-mails, saying he is a different person now than he was when he wrote the e-mails. DeVincentis also held three public forums in April to address the public and answer questions about the e-mails.

    DeVincentis and School Board President Denise Con-nelly did not return calls seeking comment about the recall Tuesday.

    Routt County Clerk Kay Weinland said she has 48 hours to approve the petition before the group can begin circulating copies to secure the 1,933 signatures it would require to recall DeVincentis.

    "The only thing we're approving is to make sure all the blanks are filled in and complete," she said. "It protects the petitioner more than anything so they don't start circulating their petitions prematurely."

    Once approved, the committee has 60 days to secure signatures from registered school district voters. The people who choose to sign the petition do not have to live in DeVincentis' District 5, which includes much of the school district outside city limits.

    If DeVincentis' recall is successful it would be the first Weinland has seen during her tenure as clerk.

    "This is the first time we've ever gotten this far," she said. "We've had a lot of discussion (recalling) other people but this is the first time anyone has ever formed a committee to recall an official."

    -To reach Alexis DeLaCruz, call 871-4234

    or e-mail adelacruz@steamboatpilot.com

    Comments

    SteamboatJoe 7 years, 4 months ago

    Denise Conolly had the opportunity to prevent this recall. She has no spine and is not a leader. She won't make the tough decisions and this is the result.

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    autumnwitch 7 years, 4 months ago

    Better late than never, I know many people who are willing to sign. Let's get it going!

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    JazzSlave 7 years, 4 months ago

    Sunnydays:

    Your argument is ludicrous. If the vicious, self-serving, juvenile attacks perpetrated by an official abusing his position didn't garner any media attention (outside the 'boat), what on earth makes you believe replacing him will?

    The first part is exactly the kind of dirty laundry that makes the media drool. The second component is the kind of bureaucratic shuffle that puts the media to sleep.

    I spent nearly 15 years in media. Trust me: no one outside of Steamboat will give a rat's patootie about the recall.

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    reallocal 7 years, 4 months ago

    But no defense for the actual reasons he is being recalled other than the emails? Didn't think so. It's hard to defend the undefendable.

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    beagle 7 years, 4 months ago

    reallocal, speaking of people thinking they're experts, I think you should read the letter from Colorado attorney David Wilson before you declare the release of the e-mails legal. He might know a little more about it than you. Here's the link.

    http://www.steamboatpilot.com/news/2007/apr/20/david_wilson_emails_and_rule_law/?letters

    And that's a hilarious take on the board being scared of Dr. D's friends. That's probably a really scary bunch of parents and teachers who liked him at Strawberry Park. Who knows what they might do? Maybe record everyone's cell phone calls and release them to the paper!

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    Sunnydays 7 years, 4 months ago

    This petition request is disingenuous if it is truly for the reasons stated in its body.

    The District will be in greater jeopardy of losing the ability to attract and retain talented teachers and administrators because of this recall attempt not because of Devincentis' actions. Devincentis' actions as vile as they were did not get much attention outside of Steamboat. A recall will. The recall will draw attention to an already bad situation.

    The RE-2 School District deserves a Board composed of impartial, fair-minded citizens who are able to conduct the business of the district in the best interest of the students. This like any elected board is a political position. I do not believe prior boards were impartial and fair-minded and I do not believe they will be in the future with or without Devincentis on the board. Ask Coach Drake how fairly he was treated by a non-Devincentis board.

    The pattern of bullying by board members existed well before Devicentis came onto the board. The eye rolling, finger pointing and lack of acknowledgement of individuals at board meetings is what resulted in the Simms board being replaced.

    A better alternative to a recall is for a solid group of individuals, the petition group, to show up at every board meeting, raise the issues they are concerned about, make sure they are being dealt with by the board, and when Devincentis is up for re-election, if he is foolish enough to run, make sure he is not re-elected. In the mean time the community should demand that the current board provide an ultimatum to Devincentis -- get help or resign. If he fails to get the help he needs, then censure him.

    The last thing this school district needs is publicity throughout the state and maybe the nation regarding this recall, and the costs to the district associated with it. While Devicentis can be blamed for this expense for not resigning, the petition committee can be blamed for this expense for moving forward with the recall. Either way everyone loses, but the district, without the recall loses less.

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    Sunspot 7 years, 4 months ago

    I would have written it like this:

    Vendetta Driven Group Begins Recall

    The Recall Group lead by vendetta driven members of the old school board announced today that they are proceeding with the recall of one of the most popular and well-liked members of the school board that our town has ever seen. Dr D won the 2004 election by a 70% margin, in spite of a massive smear campaign by a local newspaper. The recent recall march was sparked by the unauthorized release of some jokingly written 3 year old e-mails that ended up in the a local newspaper. The Recall Group includes a recently resigned member of the old board who just happens to be the one who somehow got his hands on the e-mails and leaked them to the newspaper. The current school board is doing an investigation to find out how many laws were broken by the Recall Group in obtaining and releasing the e-mails. The Recall Group's main task now is to convince a small town in northern Colorado that a pig's ear is really a silk purse.

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    beagle 7 years, 4 months ago

    This town sure does feel like a mean place lately. Hey, former board members, why don't you stay 'former.' Seems to me Stephenson's board won first prize for 'offending, insulting, and/or intimidating,' to use their own language. The current board does not appear to be a bunch of idiots, so why not let them decide what to do about Dr. D. Apparently they decided they don't need to ask him to resign and they're trying to get on with business. As someone pointed out, the recall will just do more harm. When Gleason was making sure they were "doing everything legally," I hope he also asked the lawyer about his defense for illegally releasing the e-mails that he magically got with no one's help. Ha! A classic backstabbing move that backfired when the board launched an investigation.
    And Pilot reporter Alexis, look back at those e-mails - whatever bad things Dr. D was wasting his time saying, he never "made personal attacks on Simm's family." It was more along the lines of he liked the daughter and was concerned about her.

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    reallocal 7 years, 4 months ago

    Sunnydays-This group has already been centrally involved in board actions, and this recall effort is in the best interests of the community. DeVincentis has already wreaked havoc on our district, and he is only halfway through his term. Who knows what else he has planned for the next two years? And sunnyspot, your rewriting is certainly a window into the mind of a person without the ethical, moral, or logical considerations one should hold when considering the future of a school district. (and the use of sun in the user name of two similarly written comments in a row, hmmm) Beagle, "The current board does not appear to be a bunch of idiots," you are right. They are not idiots. They are shortsighted individuals afraid of retribution from DeVincentis and his supporters. This does not make them idiots, but reinforces the opinion of many that they should not be serving in an elected capacity if they cannot do what's best for the district and, ultimately, our children. And this is probably not the last time I will say it, but-releasing public documents to the public is not illegal. If district policies are not in line with the law, then all the more reason to recall the board members who wrote the policy-yes, it was this board. Finally, beagle, have you read the emails in their entirety? I'd bet Alexis has. Just because you read the exerpts in the paper does not make you an expert. And the investigation obviously did not do anyone any good. It did not stop the recall, and all it will do is to terrorize the support staff. If someone can be punished for releasing PUBLIC records to a member of the PUBLIC, who knows what tyranical move the board will make against its own staff next? So really, the investigation has done nothing beneficial and will only undermine the staff who do such a great job running our district's schools.

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    Sunnydays 7 years, 4 months ago

    Reallocal:

    Granted many of the members of the group calling for the recall are former board members who resigned, chose not to run again, or were defeated at the polls. Much of this happened for a reason. While I do not support Devincentis' actions by any means I also do not support Donna Howell or Cyndy Simms. In a letter to the editor Millie Beal wrote that when she was on the board her board supported best practices and believed in Site Based Management. Unfortunately Site Based Management under Cyndy Simms was circumvented by Cyndy with the invention of an Administration team that included more Cyndy direct reports not at the schools than principals and assistant principals at the schools. On multiple issues she represented to the board that the administrative team voted on a particular topic without mentioning who the administrative team was. This lead to decisions inconsistent with site based management because the principals were often in unanimous agreement and outvoted by the other members of the administrative team.

    I understand Donna Howell continued the practice of having a larger administrative team under her control than the number of principles in place. Since the board under board policy could only get its information from the superintendent there was a disconnect between the board and what was happening in the district. This led to many problems that the current board is now trying to deal with. Is there any one right solution? NO. Should Devincentis be on the board any longer? No. Should Howell be a superintendent any longer? No. But a recall is not the solution. It creates angst, draws attention to negative issues, and divides the community at the very time the community needs to unite.

    You are right there are many issues in this district, a lot of them were brought on by the prior board in not looking closer at the actions of its Superintendents. Some were brought on by the vengefulness of a current board member. Some were brought on by apathy of the community at large. Steamboat has great schools, great kids, and a spectacular group of teachers. Many of these kids, educated within this district, have written more poignant remarks on this issue in a very eloquent manner than many of the adults piping in. We should be proud of these kids, and the schools that have taught them. The focus moving forward should be on supporting the wonderful things that are happening in the district and in the schools and not on the negativity of one board member. If you think Devincentis carries any support you are wrong and you give him more credit than is due if you believe he and his supporters can influence the board in the next two years. You don't like him, get rid of him in two years when he is up for re-election, stop the recall and save the district any more embarassment.

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    reallocal 7 years, 4 months ago

    Right. The focus should be on moving forward, which will be impossible with DeVincentis on the board. His actions overshadow all that is right with our district, and threaten its future by jeopardizing the 1/2 cent sales tax, future bond issues, and the reputation of our district. Recalling DeVincentis is not equal to supporting Donna Howell (although I personally do). Do not be misled. This recall is about containing the damage DeVincentis has already done and preventing him from wasting taxpayer dollars, driving away good staff, and jeopardizing the future of our district, which is essential to the education of our children.

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    Sunnydays 7 years, 4 months ago

    Unfortunately where we disagree is I believe the recall will only make a bad situation worse and change the focus over the next few months from the schools and our kids to a man who I agree should not be on the board, but who I believe can no longer do any damage. He has hurt himself to badly. Keeping this issue on the front burner, I believe, will hurt the district more than letting it fester for the next two years until Devincintis can be removed. There are five board members, John has one vote. Keeping him or removing him will have no impact on the board. Keeping this issue front and center through a recall will have an impact on the district and the community. Stop the recall.

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    reallocal 7 years, 4 months ago

    Beagle-the Colorado Supreme court ruled that the emails being sent or received on public time and a public computer did not automatically make them public record. However, sending them from a publicaly owned email account throws yet another twist into the plot. Even Mr. Wilson admits that DeVincentis had no reasonable expectation of privacy. Ken Lay did have an expectation of privacy. Were the Enron whistleblowers wrong, although they probably violated policy and maybe even the law?

    Even outside of the emails, DeVincentis deserves to be recalled. His conduct has consistently been in violation of the Board Members' Code of conduct, which addresses first conflict of interest (DeVincentis' wife is a teacher, and don't tell me they have no joint property or assets). The next section states, in part, "Members will not publicly make or express individual negative opinions about Superintendent or staff performance. Any such opinions of Superintendent or staff performance will be made by the Board, meeting in executive session as appropriate." DeVincentis has constantly undermined staff in numerous public forums, including this very newspaper. You may recall (sorry couldn't help it) an article describing Howell's status with the district where DeVincentis states, directly, "I heard what (Donna) said," board member John DeVincentis said. "I still don't believe her.'" Whether you like Howell is not the issue-the issue is DeVincentis' consistent disregard for board policy and his unethical, immoral, and immature conduct. Come to think of it, the rest of the comments in this article regarding Howell from other board members, while not so pointed, are also in violation of this policy. Here's the link, just in case you think I'm making stuff up:

    And here's the link to SSSD's Board Members Code of Conduct:

    http://www.sssd.k12.co.us/common/content.asp?PAGE=246 then click on GP-9.

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    beagle 7 years, 4 months ago

    reallocal - you must have misread Wilson's letter. It said: "Like every other district employee, he had a reasonable expectation under the law that his communications would not be disclosed or used except as legally permitted (e.g., court order; official investigation, etc.)." And public computer, public time, public e-mail account all go together. Of course it's not a private e-mail account, otherwise none of this would have been in the paper.

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    reallocal 7 years, 4 months ago

    Now go to the meeting on May 10th. It will be highly educational, I'm sure, and a chance to see the democratic process (yes, that "messy" governement) in action.

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    sbs123 7 years, 4 months ago

    The arguement that the recall is unnecessary doesn't make any sense. DeVincentis should resign. He won't. Therefore, we have no other option but recall him. Waiting two years for his term to expire is unacceptable. The additional damage he could/would create during that timeframe is too great to let him remain on the Board. He and the remainder of the Board are not thinking logically or keeping the welfare of the students in mind. This ridiculous investigation/inquisition is a ruse to try to find some cause to get rid of Donna Howell without paying out her contract. They are grasping at straws and making fools of themselves in the process. We do need an entire new board; however, DeVincentis is the controlling force on the board. He needs to go and we need to elect replacements for Troeger and Kozatch. Connelly will continue to be ineffective, but harmless without DeVincentis controlling her actions.

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    extreme 7 years, 4 months ago

    Unfortunately, many, many people are missing the point. The emails were sent to the Pilot so that everyone could see the type of person John really is and how he is manipulating the BOE. Donna Howell is an awesome individual with a tremendous heart and she cares about our children and the staff. John has decided that he no longer wants her as our superintendent and has convinced the BOE that she must be forced to leave. Since they can't seem to find a justifiable reason to fire her (so they don't have to pay her contract) they are using the emails against her. They are trying to determine that she broke policy and then they could terminate her contract. Our tax dollars are being used for this investigator (I'm sure the bill will not be small!) and yet Pat has stepped forward as the person who gave them to the Pilot. They are only continuing the investigation to find a way to pin the release of the emails on Donna. John needs to step down and let the rest of the administration and the BOE try to make repairs to the system. Donna, the BOE and the administration of SSSD, need to be able to focus on the needs of our children, schools and staff.

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    beagle 7 years, 4 months ago

    ugh, more of the meanness in those last two. easy to sit back and trash good people like Connelly as if you know everything, which you obviously don't. reallocal, no one is going to have your appetite (or time) for discussing this. but to answer your question about the other reasons for the recall: true, there were some inappropriate comments there by Dr. D. but if you were to recall every board member who hadn't followed that Code of Conduct to a T, you would have few left, especially with the 'old' board. No offense, but you do seem a little, um, obsessed. must have had some big personal problem with the man.

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    Sunspot 7 years, 4 months ago

    If the board doesn't investigate it will set a precedent. It seems that anyone in the administration can for whatever reason they desire release information from school computers to anyone without penalty. We can't allow that. There are too many sexual predators and crooks out there that would love to have that information too. The persons responsible for the retrieval and unauthorized release should be punished for their crime so as to make sure this doesn't ever happen again. Too much information is stored on school computers to let this just slide under the table.

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    beagle 7 years, 4 months ago

    actually rl, I just looked back at that Pilot article you talked about and jeez, it was a facilitated discussion between the board and superintendent to work out differences. how can they discuss that without saying what the problems are? then they've got the Pilot on the other side ready to sue them again for going into executive session which is what they need to do to talk about a personnel issue.

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    reallocal 7 years, 4 months ago

    We know who the person is. I highly doubt Pat would be putting any children in harm's way. Enough already. The unneccessary investigation is only wasting taxpayer dollars and creating unnecessary tension in the district. And why did they choose attorney Earl Rhodes? I'd be interested to know what experience this attorney has with internal investigations and public record law. Not accusing anyone or implying anything, just curious.

    And you're right, sunspot. The board is setting a precedent. The precedent being that doing the right thing will get you punished in our district. The precedent being that it is easier to continue a witchhunt already in progress than it is to stand up to a bully and ask him to do the right thing for once. The precedent being that the SSSD BOE expects to do whatever they want, regardless of the public's wishes. I don't know about you, but that's not the kind of example (or precedent, God help us if this ever happens again) I want my district to set.

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    reallocal 7 years, 4 months ago

    Beagle-the comments were made in a public forum. Negative comments about an administrator. This is only one example of DeVincentis' blatant disregard for board policies. I, for one, think his emails should be enough to convince a reasonable person to recall him. If some people are unconvinced (the many arguments include, "but he was a great principle," "that was three years ago," and "I don't like Howell either," ad nauseum), but if you need something else to chew over, I was providing one example. Believe me, there are many many more. So I would encourage anyone who thinks that the emails were released illegally, or otherwise discount their validity in the recall to examine DeVincentis' conduct outside of them. He's still not someone you want on your school board.

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    steamboatsconscience 7 years, 4 months ago

    reallocal I see that you still haven't learned when to quit, but at least you're not posting at 4 am. I'll be at the meeting and I'm sure I will be able to pick you out, the reddest face and the loudest mouth. Get over it and yourself. My position, get rid of the entire Board and we dont need a Superintendent. More money for our children and the teachers!

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    Sunnydays 7 years, 4 months ago

    The present board, one member excepted, is no different than prior boards with the exception they do not grant the Superintendent Carte Blanche to do whatever she wants. Is the purpose of a board to roll over when they see issues? which is what prior boards have done or is it to represent the people who elected them...novel thought for all the people opining that this board should function as a corporate board. One important difference corporations pay for themselves by earning profits through the sale of products or services. Our school board relies on the tax dollars of the citizens it represents to do the job. While possibly unbelievable to some of the people on this website, there are a significant number of people in town who could care less about Devincentis and there are even some who support him. Therefore without spending even more tax dollars on something that will resolve itself in no time at all (two years being a blip on the clock), lets move forward with the business of the district and let the board focus on the alleged horrendous conditions of our school district. Did anyone notice the success our students recently had at the Olympiad of the Mind or how the highschool knowledge team did at state. For doing such a horrible job things seem to be going alright.

    I once had a boss who belittled people in front of other people. Up one side and down the other. I hated the guy. Worst person I ever worked for, he showed no respect for anyone. I learned a lot from him. If I have an issue with an employee, I wait until I can speak to the employee in private before I address the issue with him or her. That is what good bosses and leaders do. Everyone is blasting Denise for her lack of back bone, her lack of leadership etc... The easy thing for her to do would have been to publicly ask John to resign. She did not do this. We will never know if she asked John to resign privately because she is a leader and has character and has in my view shown great courage during this challenging time. I do not know what was said between Denise and Devincentis but I doubt Devincentis would go to counseling without being prodded.

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    Sunnydays 7 years, 4 months ago

    As to the issue regarding the investigation of the e-mails, this is not a waste of time because it is not the first time employee records have left the district. Cyndy Simms took confidential employee records with her when she moved to Washington. This was reported in 2003 when Coach Drake's contract was not renewed under the eyes of the "prior board." This district has to get a handle on what is and is not confidential and how it can secure its employee records. What Devincentis did is a nuts, but equally nuts is the fact that e-mail records and employment records can walk out the door. A real issue for a board that recognizes a serious issue that the prior board was blind to. You say you are concerned about retaining teachers, do you think teachers are not afraid to have private correspondence they have written published in the newspaper. This will have more impact on retaining teachers than anything John Devincentis wrote in an e-mail two years ago. I hope St. Patrick thought about that when he was trying to save Donna Howell.

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    reallocal 7 years, 4 months ago

    "Therefore without spending even more tax dollars on something that will resolve itself in no time at all (two years being a blip on the clock), lets move forward with the business of the district and let the board focus on the alleged horrendous conditions of our school district. "

    The recall election is being timed so that it coincides with the regular November election and will not cost the taxpayers extra money bey. And I think you're correct. This will have a bearing on retaining teachers. Teachers will no longer have to tiptoe around politics of the board when DeVincentis is recalled and can instead focus on teaching our kids. A more positive work environment for everyone. It's gotta count for something, right?

    I'm also not sure how people keep getting confused. Releasing DeVincentis' emails did not "save" Howell. Instead, it placed her in a worse position of possibly being found responsible for policy violations (obviously not a big deal unless it's someone sunny doesn't like) and being terminated without a contract buyout, not to mention a possible black mark that would follow her wherever she went. Recalling DeVincentis is NOT the same as showing support for Donna Howell. DeVincentis is not fit to serve on the school board for many reasons other than his actions with regard to Howell.

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    Sunnydays 7 years, 4 months ago

    Knowing many of those teachers. They tip toed around the prior boards much more than they are tiptoeing today. If this is not about Donna Howell, then why did the prior board give her a contract that extended beyond two years? Why did Scott Stanford first hear rumors of these e-mails when Mike Johnson read Devincentis's letter at a board meeting over a year ago as reported in this paper when the story broke? Why, when the board was apparently moving to rid itself of Donna Howell did these e-mails magically surface? While the recall is not about Donna Howell, the purpose for the release of the e-mails certainly was. Pat Gleason would not have released these if he did not believe they would save Superintendent Howell. The only reason he came forward as the source is because he believed the investigation would damage Superintendent Howell.

    As to fitness for serving on the board. I am not sure setting up shop in the front room of the Double Z necessarilly represents the best that a school board member could be. I also do not believe attending the parties that at least one of the prior school board members attended represent the best that a school board member could be. Many people have skeletons in their closets including members of the prior board.

    I agree Devincentis should not be on the board. However, a recall is a dangerous tool. If you fail in your efforts, you only embolden Devincentis and if things are as bad as you claim, then they will only be worse. I for one will not sign the petition because I believe it is a complete waste of money and is divisive to the community and its goals for educating our students..

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    JQPUBLIC 7 years, 4 months ago

    "You say you are concerned about retaining teachers, do you think teachers are not afraid to have private correspondence they have written published in the newspaper.".... I think it will teach them to keep their derogatory remarks out of the school, to keep their personal lives personal by not using public facilities to promote their personal agendas. Hard lesson... you bet, but now instead of abusing taxpayer trust, they can do their hateful disruptive work in the privacy of their own home, on their own time... or better yet, not do it at all.

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    Sunnydays 7 years, 4 months ago

    So all public school teachers do hateful and disruptive work and have personal agendas and even if they send an email to their boyfriend or girlfriend or husband or wife from work this should not be done on taxpayer dollars even if it is before or after school hours or during a break. You must have been on the prior board...

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    sarakg 7 years, 4 months ago

    Dear Sunny-

    My father has never done anything but the right thing, and his selfless years of service have been marred by this particular event. He thought long and hard prior to releasing these emails, carefully contemplated their reprocussions, and decided to do the right thing. Trust me, it is not something that he took any pleasure in. As for your insinuations regarding his character, there is no skeleton that you will find. I'm not sure when socializing with other members of the board (past or present) became the unethical, immoral "skeleton" that you are refering to, and quite frankly find your allegations inadequate and embarassing. His primary concern has always been first for his family and secondly for his community, which are values my parents have always instilled in us. I am disappointed in your hateful, personal, and unsubstantiated attacks and allegations against members who are only doing as they see fit-utilizing a democratic process to improve our community and the educational process, policy, and experience for the youth in this community.

    Sincerely, Sara Kathleen Gleason

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    JQPUBLIC 7 years, 4 months ago

    Sunny... not all teachers, just the self-serving ones on a mission like Dr. D... most teachers are overworked and underpaid and I don't have a problem with them sending personal emails, the majority of them are smart enough to refrain from saying something that might prove embarrassing later. Get your head out of your.... what part of "keep their derogatory remarks out of the school" and "not using public facilities to promote their personal agendas" is so hard to comprehend?

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    Sunnydays 7 years, 3 months ago

    Sara,

    The same would apply to the people who are attacking the current board, Dr. Devencentis, and other people blogging.

    Your father is a good man, I know him and he has raised a good family. You are all solid kids. However I think he is wrong on this issue and I do not agree with him. I also believe that some of the other prior board members and people writing letters to the editor on this issue are equally not suitable to being on the school board. They should know that if you live in glass houses you shouldn't throw stones.

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    gwendolyn 7 years, 3 months ago

    "...if you live in glass houses..."

    Does this mean you think every poster to the Pilot who writes about the need to remove D has done things similar to those D has?

    Wow.

    What a warped sense of consideration regarding the act of dissension.

    Are you a go along to get along kind of gal? Isn't that what the majority of Congress did when Bush sent troops to Iraq? How'd that work out, btw?

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    gwendolyn 7 years, 3 months ago

    Ms. Gleason,

    It pains me to read your postings here. I may or may not support your father's actions but I do know this: as his child you are fighting a battle that should not be in your hands to fight at all.

    I admire your desire to support and stand up for your father -- but he's an adult fully capable of defending himself in this situation. Please, let him do so.

    Many of the individuals who post on this board banter b.s. back and forth with little to no concerns for the impact on the individuals (or their families) discussed. It's always painful to read negative commentary like this when it directly impacts you or someone you love. But, it is part and parcel to taking on a public position. Your father knows this and knows he must take it in stride, no matter how painful.

    By participating on this forum you may or may not be actually helping your father. I'm certain he feels a sense of pride in your desire to stand up for him -- but, if he's truly the decent man you write about then he is no doubt also pained terribly to see you do so.

    Love your father and continue to stand by his side. But don't allow yourself to get sucked further into the discussion here. Your energies are better spent elsewhere.

    gwendolyn

    p.s. Shame on those who would choose to engage this young woman further into this discussion about her father. It's not only unseemly, it completely lacks moral integrity. When it comes to the children of these public figures, BACK OFF! Your commentary and battle with them is entirely out of line and not a winning hand to play.

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    Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 3 months ago

    Gwen- Nobody called Sara out as Pat's daughter and forced her to post. She seems to have done this of her own accord. I can honestly say I've never seen Sara post on this site prior to this incident, unless she was using an anonymous pseudonym before, but I can't say for sure.

    Sara brought herself into this, and I believe she is above the age of 18 years old (correct me if I'm wrong). That means she's an adult and should be able to handle herself. If not, I'm sure she'd stop posting. She gets my admiration for sticking up for her father (whether I agree with how he released the emails or not) and for doing it in her own name. She seems to be unafraid of verbal retribution and I applaud her for that! She's already one-up on anyone disparaging her.

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    gwendolyn 7 years, 3 months ago

    I know she's an adult, currently in college I think.

    She should still be off limits to the crap going down in this group, regardless of how she became engaged in it all.

    But Sunny's response to her was distasteful, at best.

    Frankly, this is my last post on any message forum that includes this kind of discussion with the CHILDREN of those in question.

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    JQPUBLIC 7 years, 3 months ago

    It seems to me the Gleason's have raised their child/children to think and speak for themselves. Sara joined this forum on her own and should be accepted as a young woman that speaks her mind and can hold her own, not one that needs to be sheltered from the facts of life. No one went after " the children of these public figures" so "BACK OFF" seems a little out of line. I'm sure Sara did not expect everyone to back down just because she spoke out in defense of her father so why don't we let Sara decide where to "spend her energies".

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    Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 3 months ago

    On JQ's statement, JQ and I agree! LOL!

    Gwen- Sunny's response seemed very low key, and since Sara was going off on people disparaging him, Sunny had the "counterpoint" view. Sunny disagreed, as is Sunny's right. There were no bad names called or anything like that: just a different view of things. That's what this whole issue is about: whose view is correct.

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    Sunnydays 7 years, 3 months ago

    I know the Gleason family, including Pat and I believe they are very good people. I believe very few people posting letters and former board members "live in glass houses" so to speak. In fact some of these people are very good friends and I respect their opinions, I just don't agree with them. However there are a few people who have written condemning Devincentis' values whose own values wouldn't even stand up to what Devincetis did. Those are the people I take issue with and who I believe do not have the credibility to talk on Devincentis's values or serve on any board.

    Regardless what I say, it will be misconstrued, twisted and used to promote one agenda or the next, so as with everyone else on this form. I am out a here....

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