Thursday, September 27, 2007

Ryan Resignation

It was announced this week that Hilliard School Board member Cheryl Ryan has resigned from the Board to take a position with the the Ohio School Boards Association, which prohibits its employees from also being school board members.

This gives our school board the opportunity to appoint an individual to serve the remainder her term - two more years. Applications are now being accepted.

My Reaction

A friend called me suggesting that I apply. It's an interesting thought, and I've been weighing the reasons to do so, and the reasons why not.

I've decided not to apply, and will continue the campaign to be elected to the School Board in November.

The reason is this: If elected, my intention is to drive for radical change in the way things get done in our community, and to do so I think it is important to have been elected by the people, not appointed by the very Board whose behavior I intend to change. I hope the community will lend me its backing in that mission.

Another friend said I should apply just to find out what the current School Board members think of me. If they turn me down, he says, it tells the community that the incumbents don't want me on the Board, which might further motivate the community to vote for me in November.

That kind of cloak-and-dagger, back room maneuvering is exactly what I think is wrong with the way our community is being led. I prefer to present my positions to the people of the community, let folks compare what I propose to that of the other candidates, and allow them to select, in a General Election, the two of us they think can best do the job that needs to be done.

The Appointment Process

The public may never know who the list of people are who apply for Ms. Ryan's seat, or how the Board goes about making its decision. It is not clear to me how the Sunshine Laws apply in this situation, or how much the Board has to disclose about its process and deliberations (but I will find out).

Here's what I found out about the appointment process, according to the Ohio School Boards Association website:
  • The Board must fill the vacancy at its first regular meeting or special meeting no less than 10 days after the vacancy is effective. Ms Ryan's resignation is effective Sept 30, 2007, which means the Board must make its decision at its regularly scheduled meeting on October 15, or at a special meeting it calls between October 10 and October 15.
  • The interviews with candidates and the deliberation about the candidates can take place in Executive Session. However the actual vote must take place in public.
  • To appoint a candidate, the candidate must receive at least 3 votes of the remaining 4 Board members.
  • The appointee will in this case, as I understand it, serve the remaining two years of Ms. Ryan's term.

    The only thing we can be sure of is that it will be a new face, and one that is friendly to the current Board. It will also be someone who gets a seat without going to the effort of collecting 150 signatures on their nominating petitions, or running for office in the General Election, meaning the person will take office without having to reveal anything about their agenda to the public.

    This selection will be very interesting.


  1. Hilliard has become a waste land of snobby, rich, jackasses. Thus we forget this was a farm town with hard working people. Here is an easy solution to the schol district problem...GET RID OF THE PEOPLE WHO MAKE WAY TOO MUCH MONEY THAT DON'T DO ANYTHING. I am sorry, but the Dale McWhatever his name is, needs to take a break and a real person needs to take his job. What exactly does he do? Should he make over 6 figures? I think not. People, let's get back to the basics here and reevaluate the situation. Start from the top and work your way down the line and see how much tax payer money is spent on salaries.

  2. While I'm not a fan of the tone of your comment, you do touch on a point that many people make: Is the administrative organization too top-heavy?

    I don't know the answer to that question, but if we are entering a time of fiscal crisis - and I believe we are - then this is where we need to start trimming the payroll...

  3. The only thing we can be sure of is that it will be a new face, and one that is friendly to the current Board.

    Eggs-actly. Ryan is a loss for the district in that no matter on "how board" with the Board she was, the new person will be even more "on board".

  4. Are you going to have any signs or bumper-stickes or whatnot that we can obtain in order to help your campaign?

  5. Joe:

    Yes, I'm in the process of getting some yard signs and flyers printed up. Thanks for your offer to help.

    If anyone else is interested in helping my campaign by posting a yard sign or by passing out flyers, please let me know.


  6. Oh Paul,

    Please excuse my "tone", however, I am a 3rd generation Hilliard resident. Both of my children are enrolled in Hilliard Schools. I have seen first hand the changes that take have taken place. I do belive when Davidson was built, the district told voters this school would be able to added on to. Really? That school opened almost 20 years ago...and now there is a 3rd high school being built. Lies! Just lies!

    Too many politics going on here. Save that for the Presidential race. Real people need to run things and will get the job done. Let me explain what I mean by "real people". This would be residents of Hilliard who have been life long residents and who don't expect to make such large salaries.

    And, to your comment about trimming the salaries, how do we do that?

    I am on board as well, as long as you are going to do the right thing, even if that means stepping on some toes.

    There is nothing I like better than people raising an eyebrow or two to my comments, so sorry for sounding so annoyed!

  7. It is most definitely my intention to radically change things, and it would surprise me if any current Board member supports my agenda.

    If we want to have a great school system, we need to have a great teachers and administrators. That means offering them a compensation package which serves to recruit and retain top-notch people -- folks who would have that kind of earning potential in other school districts or in the private sector. We should not be afraid to pay necessary and effective high-level administrators a six-figure salary.

    The key words in that statement are 'necessary and effective.' The bar needs to be raised in my opinion, and it could be that some of the current team won't pass.