How did Tip put it? All politics are local?
http://www.dgreport.com has over 150 posts first-hand witnessing the arrogance and abuse of power of the CHSD 99 Board of Education and the majority members of that board over the years. It all happened specifically after long time Board member and President Bruce Beckman stepped down after 20 years of service, and before current Board President Bill White was elected to the middle chair.
During that in-between time the former Superintendent got stiff final year pay raises (from $187.2K in 2005 to $256.5K+ in 2008) to goose his pension; the local teachers union made campaign contributions to the majority board members election fund; FOIA’s were routinely denied; no one knows how many times the OMA was violated; reporters verbally harassed when they wrote articles the board majority disliked; a board member silenced for trying to talk about cheaper insurance options; residents denied the chance to speak at meetings; few accurate recordings or minutes kept of public meetings; Township Democratic Party newsletters stacked in the School Districts Administration building during School Board meetings, and more. The Board President during all of this was/is Julia Kennedy-Beckman, the Democratic State Central Committee 13th District Representative.
All finally brought to an end thanks to a conservative Republican named Deb Boyle, who then worked hard to help elect more responsible public servants to replace pious rulers.
For one post at DGreport I researched the IASB database of both Nepotism Policy and Ethics Policy for school boards.
The BOE 99 Nepotism Policy is unique in Illinois, maybe illegal, and specifically written and rewritten by Policy Chair and former majority member Megan Schroeder, apparently to ensure there would be a policy to prevent Deb Boyle from performing her duties, should she be elected. Stack the deck, tilt the field, then start pointing the fingers.
Now it seems the board may consider returning to the original Nepotism and Conflict of Interest Policy as per the policy the vast majority of IASB members have.
Those deposed are angry, and lashed out at the meeting where Ms. Beckman was voted out as President. Here’s a cell-phone video of that. I taped one other meeting over two years ago, which was the classic of then board member Megan Schroeder exploding in rage at a resident questioning her alleged abuse of position to favor her children, but the camera owner agreed not to air it. In retrospect too bad.
After a recent meeting, one of the still remaining old board majority Terry Pavesich barked at Ms. Boyle that she was a “worthless bitch”. That was done in front of board members, administrators, and reporters. Just a couple examples of how the former majority treated everyone they consider the enemy.
Now the BGA has published a “whistleblower” story about how the board might roll the nepotism policy back to how it had been for over 25 years. Illinois Review re-posted the story on their website. This entire “whistleblower” episode is yet another attack. The author and the story seem to think a tougher policy is better. Yep, better for slanting the playing field to punish one person who had the audacity to run for office and win. I called the BGA and spoke with Mr. Schroedter and he was polite and I’ve no issue with him or that organization, but it seemed he wrote his story, based on one “whistleblower” and with Ms. Boyle yet again declining to roll in the mud. Mr. Schroedter has probably moved on trying to keep pace with the vast amount of political misbehavior in Illinois, leaving behind another piece that helps once again tilt the field, stack the deck, and allow the former majority to wag their tongues, cluck their disapproval, point their fingers. I doubt that was Mr. Schroedter’s intent, but that is the result, as the tongues wagged and the fingers pointed by a few. Most people didn’t notice, but I did. I’ve seen this for years: build a whole cloth of deceit one thread at a time.
My responses pointing this out (after all, I helped document the nonsense and the abuses) on their websites have not been posted. I can’t say they ever will; no one likes to walk into the middle of a six plus year sustained personal attack and get played. I respect and enjoy reading the BGA site and Illinois review, but they’ve both been played by a local group bitter at losing control of the school board. How hard would it have been to google and read the background?
So the current BOE 99 might change the slanted, custom Boyle Policy back to how most all SB’s in Illinois have theirs written- along IASB guidelines. The current BOE President Bill White said they’ll have a lawyer come in and talk to them about it, so they’re all on the same page.
Boyle herself is now the Vice President of the Board of Education. Ms. Boyle has made no attacks, no insinuations or veiled accusations, nor used angry profanity towards anyone. She’s stayed out of the mud. Not so former board majority members.
Deb Boyle is now a candidate for House 81, oddly an empty seat district; coincidence?
I called Deb Boyle, and she promptly returned my call. I’m a Republican Precinct Committeeman, and she attends meetings and events when her schedule allows, so I’ve spoken with her before. She’s moved on from this latest episode, which shows more than a little class. Maybe it’s from being used to this kind of backbiting; impressive nonetheless. I’ll do what I can to help her get elected to that new house seat, as she has proven to be a level-headed public servant.
And as always, any comments or emails will be treated as potentially publishable.
POSTSCRIPT- Elaine Johnson has posted on FaceBook that she’s considering restarting DGreport. Many honest folks from all parts of the political spectrum hope so: others probably not so much.