Sunday, September 21, 2008

The rat in the kitchen won't eat the cheese sandwiches.

When a certain assistant superintendent decided to embrace an opportunity to enrich her friend, Arnie Tucker, through a poorly-written lease with the sole purpose of funneling money away from legitimate procurement processes, she meddled with Purchasing to make it all happen. The District handed over $40,000.00 in cash and awarded more than $100,000.00 in business that was not competitively determined.

When this same assistant superintendent decided to interfere in property management related issues, the District paid $5,600,000.00 for property valued at $3,300,000.00 - assuming no contamination in either appraisal. That was a loss of more than $2,300,000.00, plus the cost to remediate the contaminated soils.

When this same assistant superintendent decided to sell an 11 acre piece of land adjacent to Woodway during the peak of the real estate market, the District managed to limit the number of potential buyers, made significant concessions to the City and channeled everything through their legal team to avoid detection by members of the public. The losses are hard to quantify but certainly surpass $2,000,000.00.

When this same assistant superintendent decided to move Capital Partnerships away from Property Management, where no management fees were assessed, to Capital Projects where everything is hit with a fat bill for overhead, how did that serve the interests of our community? It isn't a partnership if one partner hires out their share of the effort.

Now this same assistant superintendent is meddling with the Food Services program while its seasoned director is away on extended leave. Is anyone actually surprised by the implementation of this highly questionable policy of providing frozen cheese sandwiches to children that owe more than $10? How do taxpayers get a fair deal by having our best educators teaching hungry children that can't hear anything over their rumbling tummies?

This same assistant superintendent is revising the Facility Use Policy that somehow allows "special friends" to use Class A office space full time without paying the rent required in their signed lease while forcing PTAs to pay to coordinate their volunteer activities for the benefit of the District.

The rule of the game at the Edmonds School District is "Whatever she wants". If you don't agree, you become a target to be squeezed out with little regard for due process or the best interests of our community.

If the Board actually cared about the financial health of the District, they would demand a higher standard or resign, allowing more competent leadership to take the helm.


Anonymous said...

Don't forget that this same asst. superintendent revised board policy so that Board member's spouses can be employed by the district. The part I "love" about this change is that she publicly called the revisions "simple housekeeping". In my opinion it's a HUGE change, not "simple housekeeping".

Anonymous said...

How can SHE be stopped? Doesn't Nick have a back bone? SHE isn't happy with one issue; SHE is driven for POWER; gets one issue swinging HER way, then finds another issue to go HER way. Mark, your summary of of this article is informative, to the point, and articulately written. I know there are some legal actions in place; I only hope that SHE can be ousted before the District is in complete shambles.

Anonymous said...

The whole cheese sandwich media blitz would not have happened if the Supt. Office would run their office and stay out of Food Service Business. The Food Service Dept had decisions made that put them where they are today. Nick started the ball 3 years ago by directing the dept. to feed every child no questions asked but never stood behind his own directive. He would report familys that didn't feed their child to Child Protection, never happened. the Managers and Central Office told him his plan would not work and he didn't listen so here they are $200,000 in the hole. Thanks Nick! Run your department and let the Food Service run theirs.

15+years ago the director was let go when she was $300,000 in the hole and was trying to hid the information from her boss by moving the figures around. Is Barb Lloyd returning or did the district let her go because of the directive from Nickie boy?

At the community meeting no one said Nick put us here, no said the dept. continued to ask Nick to stop the directive so the dept. could run a business and stay in the black. the community could not believe that this went on this long and just now is being dealt with. What wasn't said at the community meeting was the dept. asked way before they were this far in dedit to find another way and each time was turned down by the Supt. Office. Step up Nick and say you screwed up and let the F/S dept know they were right and you were WRONG! You are allowing the community to think that this is all the FS dept fault when it is NOT!

Anonymous said...

It's all a scam operation. Management each takes their proportional piece of the pie, and with the school board collusive in the banquet. And what's left for children or the rank and file employees - crumbs.

We need more people to stand up and go public (if anonymously) with what they know.

We need to look at 2009 as an opportunity to partially impart accountability to the Board, and endeavor with great effort to effect change. Make your experience and knowledge known to the community at large, and remember to mention re-election dated of the Board in the process of potential remedy.

Anonymous said...

Again, an excellent article that summarizes the failings of Ms. Miller but more importantly, where is THE BOARD on this? Isn't it strange that there is not a SINGLE DISSENTING OPINION or inquiry from the board? Their quiet acquiescence is an embarrassment. Someone, anyone, PLEASE, run against them and shake up the apple tree!

Anonymous said...

A friend of the Blog will be running for a school board position soon. Just wait until the opening day of filing for that position. said...

I am thinking about "modernizing" an apartment in one of the director districts up for grabs in 2009.

Anonymous said...

Hey Mark, modernize the Lynnwood area, and move in. We need some help on the east side. Your ideas more than welcome here! said...

Whatever happens, should host a debate between candidates. The City of Edmonds had a forum where candidates for the Board introduced themselves but didn't take any questions or demonstrate the presence of actual intelligence.

We could videotape the debate and show it on one of the local channels.

Perhaps the "floral center" in downtown Edmonds would be a great venue. We could invite members of the community and have the event catered with cookies and coffee from Food Services - if they haven't been bailed out by the Federal government by then.

Anonymous said...

Let's just use one of the local schools for the debate! I wonder what Mick would charge us for use of the facility! If the Blog rented the facility the charge would be astronomical!!!!!

Anonymous said...

These are only a few highlights of the asst. superintendent's "contributions" to the edmonds school district. Don't forget she was responsible for the bookkeeper who embezzled $750K.

Even worse, her overall display of bullying, intimidation, and narcissim have no place in any workplace, much less a public workplace.