Putting the Superintendent on Notice
It’s time to evaluate the Superintendent again for the year, and here is the statement I read tonight as a minority report response to the evaluation by the majority. Our supporting documentation is here.
December 20, 2012
RE: Superintendent Evaluation for 2012, Minority Report
The Board of Education is tasked on a yearly basis with making an evaluation of the performance of the Superintendent in his role as the chief education officer for the Denver Public Schools. Board Policy CBIA governs the parameters of the Superintendent’s public evaluation in fulfilling adopted District objectives, fiscal management of the District, District planning responsibilities and supervision and evaluation of District personnel.
As part of this year’s assessment of the superintendent’s performance, the board minority was instructed by Board President Seawell to prepare “a minority report.” While preparing such a report regrettably accentuates the split on the Denver Public Schools Board of Education, it is necessary to create a separate assessment of the Superintendent because the board’s majority will not make use of
long-standing metrics established by both the Denver Plan and school board policy when assessing the Superintendent.
Based on our assessment, the Superintendent receives the following evaluation of his performance for the past year:
- Fulfillment of District Objectives: The superintendent receives two evaluations of “does not meet” his performance objectives and two “partially meets” his objectives for this area. Following the model set forth by the board majority, in that “partially meets” will be treated as “does not meet,” the Superintendent has not met four of his performance objectives.
- Fiscal Management of the District: The superintendent receives one evaluation of “does not meet” his performance objectives and one “partially meets” his objectives for this area.
- District Planning and Management: The superintendent receives an evaluations of “does not meet” his performance objectives for this area.
Of greatest concern is the evaluation of the superintendent’s ability to plan and manage the district. While we considered many possible outcomes for the initiatives created by the superintendent, and some of these outcomes are potentially positive, the superintendent and his staff seem to disregard board policy on an all-too-frequent basis. It is our feeling the number of policies violated suggests a repeated pattern of willful and intentional violations of these policies. However, this superintendent has never been evaluated based on compliance with board policy, so the members of the board’s minority believe the superintendent should be provided with guidance and an understanding that, should he choose to continue to violate policy, the members of the board’s minority will seek his termination.
Board policy is especially important to the model under which the Denver Board of Education expects to operate policy and governance. This model has long been established as a preferred way for school boards to help create organizations that are successful. However, it is not possible to follow this model when the CEO repeatedly ignores policy, especially those surrounding community involvement, financial transparency, and governance that should be provided by the school board.
The Superintendent is to receive a maximum bonus of $50,000 according to his employment contract, to be divided between objective and subjective measures. Using the majority members’ procedure to count “partially met” objectives as “not met,” we have concluded that only four District goals have been met for this year. We recommend the payment of $5,264 to the Superintendent for objective goals achieved.
With respect to subjective goals, we are troubled by what appears to be a repeated, willful and intentional disregard of Board policies; therefore, we cannot recommend any portion of the performance-based compensation for which the Superintendent is eligible at this time, for this year.
We eagerly anticipate the Board’s impending work on the retooling of the Denver Plan and look forward to the opportunity to work in close concert with our colleagues on the board majority.
Jeanne Kaplan, Director, DPS District 3 (Central Denver)
Arturo Jiménez, Director, DPS District 5 (Downtown, Northwest and West Denver)
Andrea Mérida, Director, DPS District 2 (West and Southwest Denver)