Arizona Attorney General Monitors Gilbert Public Schools for Open Meeting Law Violations

We promised more information about how Gilbert Public Schools is being monitored by the Arizona Attorney General. This new development came about because Superintendent Christina Kishimoto and her Rubber Stamp Governing Board just can’t bring themselves to follow the law. They seem to believe it’s preferable to ask forgiveness later. Or maybe they’re just stupider than we thought.

Since the AG monitoring is really nothing more than ANOTHER way for GPS to pass along some more money to their favorite lawyers, there’s no reason for the present administration to straighten up and fly right. All this means is that The Trust lawyers make some extra cash by agreeing to look over all agendas for OML violations before they are posted. It’s not like the government is going to stop Christina 3-2 Kishimoto from doing what she always intended to do. By golly, she was right! She got her hands slapped, but only with a wet noodle, which is as effective a deterrent as you would expect. All the while, Lily, Jill and Charlie applauded their superintendent and followed her lead.

Here’s the letter from the Attorney General dude who is in charge of enforcing Arizona’s Open Meeting Law. Notice how the letter opens with findings that board retreats have been conducted in violation of OML since August 2014. Notice the letter is dated August 26, 2015. Notice the board was in the middle of yet another board retreat two days AFTER the date of the letter. See … nothing new under the sun.

The August 28, 2015 GPS board retreat violated OML in the exact same way the board and administration violated OML for the past year: no recording of the meetings, no minutes of the meetings. The only public notice of the meetings were “courtesy notices” accompanied by the administration and board asserting that the retreats were not public meetings because they said so. In the case of the Board on the Run, the administration wouldn’t even tell the public WHERE in the 179 acres of Grand Canyon University the meeting would actually be held. They relented only when their own group of allies started calling the superintendent’s office to ask exactly where the meeting was going to be held, and that was just a couple of hours before the first meeting began.

The Attorney General dude also wrote “there was some confusion regarding the online posting of the Board’s notices and agendas for upcoming meetings.” Yeah, there’s a GPS policy for that, but who is going to make GPS top dogs follow their own policies? Especially policies that are gosh-golly INCONVENIENT and might make the public think they were actually INVITED to those meetings. You saw how effective this hand-slap of a letter was when Christina 3-2 Kishimoto and her Rubber Stamps went right ahead and did the same thing all over again. It was like a school yard taunt: “Who’s gonna stop us? Nyah, nyah. Nanny nanny boo boo.”

That scenario was very predictable, especially from the gang that gave you “optics” as the reason for listing GPS employee salaries as sort-of #1 on the propaganda GPS issued for the override and bond election:

Things did not bode well when Good Old Charlie Santa Cruz said he wanted to put employee salaries as the first bullet (which was laudable on its own), but Charlie said it was necessary for the *optics* if the override was to get passed. Homer Simpson management.

The illegally convened board retreat at Grand Canyon University showed just how serious Christina 3-2 Kishimoto and her Rubber Stamp governing board are about employee salaries. Yeppers, the *optics* shifted to #3 when it got down to actually ranking with numbers, and two other incredibly important issues rose above staff salary increases. Silly Jilly Humpherys wanted to reorder that list to push employee salaries even lower. It’s mind-boggling that Silly Jilly thinks it’s the right thing to look at district demographics AFTER the district completes their most important goal: giving Gilbert Classical Academy a new campus, no matter the cost, no matter the need, no matter nothing … just get it done because Christina 3-2 Kishimoto said to get it done.

Just when you think things couldn’t get more surreal when it comes to the GPS governing board, the people who support Silly Jilly and her pals are egging each other on to do more, more and more unpaid work. That’s because the technology that Christina 3-2 Kishimoto bought for the district means the expectations are that teachers will be available to students 24-7. You know it will be more work, UNPAID work, at that. The important phrase in the comment below is last, “even when they [teachers] cannot be in the classroom.” Like because they’re sick. Or they took a personal day off to do something really, really important. Or they’re on jury duty. It’s almost like these board supporters have regressed to second grade, where students believe their teachers don’t have any other life outside of their classroom.

Comment by a board supporter: I am really impressed at how Chromebooks have been so valuable to classrooms when a substitute is needed. In the past few weeks I have seen several cases where the teacher prepared a lesson, sent the instructions and all of the links to students and any person assigned to cover that class can monitor a focused group of students who are moving forward with instruction. Subs don’t have access to our computer drives with the media clips, webquests, literature passages or group-shared documents. Subs usually can’t log into our laptops and project Powerpoints or Smartboard lessons or show a teacher-made demo of the lesson. With the Chromebooks, teachers can monitor the students’ progress in real time and provide feedback using the classroom management software, e-mail and comments directly on uploads of student work. Using Chromebooks has enabled teachers to maintain rigor and clarity in the flow of their lessons even when they cannot be in the classroom.

It gets worse: remember when two new admin positions appeared on the consent agenda for the July 28, 2015 board meeting? Julie Smith asked if new administrators were being added. Christina 3-2 Kishimoto replied the new positions were “only the reorganization we talked about already.” There was a bit of a wink, wink, nudge, nudge, of course, because any reorganization would have been discussed during yet another secret meeting prior to the July board meeting.

The *Proposed Organizational Framework* that will be occurring in GPS this year is shown below on the left, with TWO NEW ADMINISTRATIVE POSITIONS, marked with a star. You can click the images below for larger, more easy to read versions. Compare the reorganized administration with the *Current Organizational Framework* shown below on the right. Don’t forget that generous pay raises have flown under the radar on the consent agenda, too. That’s because the people who are in these newly reorganized positions and the Chief Talent Staff are doing so much work these days <gag>. Tell me again that teachers are important to Christina 3-2 Kishimoto and her Rubber Stamp governing board.

GPSnewadminframework    GPScurrentadminframework

Get your unicorns and pixie dust here, folks, right here in GPS. Things are more screwed up than anyone could have imagined. No amount of money can solve terminal stupidity and rampant lying to the public.

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