Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Give School Board a Gold Star; Others an `F'

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Give School Board a Gold Star; Others an `F'

Article excerpt

Odds and ends.

Brace yourself:

The School Board -- at least five of the board members -- has

been showing some mettle lately, and in a stunning reversal has

actually been doing a good job for the city's public school

kids.

Running buddies Stan Jordan and Billy Parker, who in the past

have pretty much had their way with the board and, thus, the

school system, are now 0-2 in attempts to delay finding a

permanent school superintendent.

The other five board members hung tough at last month's board

meeting and stuffed an attempt by Jordan and Parker to delay

hiring a search firm to find candidates for the job.

Then again at last Tuesday's board meeting, the same five

refused to extend the search well into next year, the goal of

Jordan and Parker.

The school system needs a permanent leader as soon as possible,

and the majority of the board members acted properly in keeping

the search on track.

At the very least, Jordan and Parker wanted to put off hiring a

new superintendent until after the fall elections, when three of

the current board members -- Susan Wilkinson, Linda Sparks and

Gwen Gibson -- are up for re-election.

Why wait until then?

Here's a possibility: Jordan has a history of backing

candidates challenging incumbents who don't vote his way.

And why would he want to wait to hire a superintendent until

he possibly had a board majority more sympathetic to him?

The speculation among some board members is he wants to be

superintendent.

But that's so absurd it couldn't be true.

Moving on:

One of the St. Johns River Water Management District's best

employees -- Pat McSweeney -- is in the process of being fired.

Why? For telling the truth.

A couple of weeks ago, during the floods brought on by El Nino,

City Councilman Mike Hogan jumped all over the water management

district, claiming bureaucratic mumbo jumbo was delaying

critical drainage work at Wills Branch Creek. …

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