No Responses and Superintendent Comments

From: Murphy Erin R
Sent: Thursday, May 22, 2014 10:47 AM
To: Jeffco Schools Board of Education
Subject: Concerns
 
Dear Members of the JeffCo Board of Education,

 
 
I would like to express a number of concerns.   
 
 
To begin, this will be the third time that I have contacted the BoE to express my concerns about the lack of response to my previous emails, as well as those of other community members.  I wrote the BoE before JCEA contract negotiations began, and have not yet received a response.  I followed up about a month later requesting a response, and still received nothing.  Most recently, I wrote expressing concerns about the lack of response to community emails, and suggested that a possible solution to what I assume is an overwhelming amount of contact would be for Mr. Newkirk to share his duties to respond with other BoE members, and specifically requested a response.  I am yet to hear back regarding any of these contacts.  You have a duty to respond to the community, and you are neglecting this duty.   
 
 
 
I would also like to express new concerns I have about the pending Superintendent contract.  I am baffled at the justification to pay Mr. McMinimee a significantly higher salary than Dr. Stevenson was earning.  He is, by all accounts, less qualified than she, and does not even hold a Superintendent’s License.  Is this because he is a man and she was a woman?  I can think of no other possible reason for this significant difference in pay, despite the clear difference in qualifications.
 
 
 
I am also shocked that Mr. McMinimee has been offered a 5 year contract.  Since Mr. Witt has made it very clear that he does not believe teachers deserve a contract, I am terribly confused that he would approve offering Mr. McMinimee a 5 year contract.  Is this because contracts are a way to build good faith and trust between employee and employer?  Is this because contracts respect the worker and provide them with rights?  Is this because a contract clearly outlines the expectations for both employer and employee and thus facilitates a healthy, productive, and stable work environment?  The answer to all of these questions is, of course, “yes.”  Thus, Mr. Witt and his allies on the Board have again communicated, without any doubt, that you do not respect teachers, wish to build good faith with teachers, value teachers, or wish to offer teachers a high quality working environment.  There is no other way for this inequity to be interpreted.  I urge you to offer District employees the same respect and dignity that you are offering the new Superintendent, and extend our contracts.
 
 
 
Finally, since Mr. McMinimee, Mr. Witt, Mr. Newkirk, and Ms. Williams have all touted the value of performance based pay, I look forward to hearing the discussion and seeing changes to the Mr. Mc Minimee’s contract in order to provide him with performance based pay.  He should be offered a base salary of $200,000 a year.  The rest of the proposed salary should only be available to him based on District wide student test scores, District wide teacher evaluations, and his own evaluations.  If students in JeffCo meet the Board’s academic goals, if enough teachers in JeffCo are performing as “Effective” and “Highly Effective,” and if Mr. McMinimee is himself deemed “Highly Effective,” Mr. McMinimee should be rewarded for his leadership and accomplishments with financial incentives.  If these goals are not met, Mr. McMinimee should not earn these financial incentives.  I cannot imagine leader who could possibly advocate this type of pay system for the employees whom his is charged to lead, and not happily embrace a similar pay system for himself.  
 
 
 
I look forward to a timely response to both the new concerns expressed in this communication, and also the previous concerns which have, to this date, been ignored.  
 
 
Thank You,

Erin Murphy