Kilroy’s one-man fight for transparency of Delaware’s school boards

On January 24, 2009 I sent this E-mail to Red Clay’s school board and superintendent Bob A.  

I feel the board needs to change board policy to never vote on an item submitted by a board member during the meeting in progress. Start the discussion however defer any action aka vote until the next meeting. Make a motion to put it on the next board meeting action items unless issue is in regards to safety or health risks.

I strongly suggest that recording of board meetings be changed from taped to digital recordings. This way the sound file of any preliminary discussion can be E-mailed to any member not present or to board members who wish to review the discussion. Let’s take the time to have full discussions and time to digest!

Also, if the board is bold enough I suggest digital recordings be placed on the district’s webpage as a sound file. Lets invest in the future.

Sincerely John Allison

And this blog post; Red Clay mushrooms grow better in the dark April 29, 2009

And this blog post; Red Clay’s Dr. Merv delivers test audio recording of board meeting as promised / September 20 , 2010.

Done deal Merv makes executive decision with board’s bless to record public sessions of school board meetings.

Christina School board one-ups Merv February 2011 with a “board” policy to record their meetings.

  

DE State Board of Ed discusses recordings of meetings

FROM DE STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION MARCH 17, 2011

THERE WAS DISCUSSION ON DISTRICTS  PROVIDING AN AUDIO RECORDING OF MEETINGS AND DR. LOWERY INDICATED THAT SOME DISTRICTS CURRENTLY PROVIDE A RECORDING ON THEIR WEBSITES.

Damn right Lillian , Kilroy is coming for the State Board of Education to record their public meetings

You damn right ! House Bill #26 w/HA 3 clears Delaware House of Representatives. Kilroy with some help of Dave Jones (R.I.P) convinced Rep Hudson to hear me out. She ask the I send her a rough legislation draft. I did and she and former state Rep Willis move H.B# 26 forward. This legislation would required the state board to record their meetings. I used Red Clay and Christina’s voluntary recording of their board meetings as a stepping stone.

  

146th General Assembly
House Bill # 26 w/HA 3

 

Primary Sponsor:

Willis

Additional Sponsor(s):    Rep. Lavelle & Rep. Hudson & Sen. Katz & Sen. Lawson & Sen. Simpson

CoSponsors:

Reps. Manolakos, Ramone, Walker, Wilson, Kowalko; Sens. Peterson, Sorenson

Introduced on :

01/25/2011

Long Title:

AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 14 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO THE STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION.

Synopsis:

This bill requires that all public meetings of the State Board of Education be digitally recorded and made available to the public on the Department of Education’s website within one business day. The recordings will not be considered the official Board minutes.
Red Clay Consolidated School District has been, as of September 2010, providing the public with digital recordings of their Board public session meetings via the District’s website. The Christina School District School Board enacted a policy to provide digital recordings of their public session meetings and expects to be online in January 2011.

Current Status:

Signed   On   06/08/2011

Volume Chapter

78:45

Date Governor acted:

06/08/2011

Full text of Legislation:

(in HTML format)

Legis.html

Email this Bill to a friend

Full text of Legislation:

(in MS Word format)

Legis.Docx   (Microsoft Word is required to view this document.)

 

Fiscal Notes/Fee Impact:

F/N (Complete)

Amendments:

HA 1 to HB 26 – Stricken
HA 2 to HB 26 – Stricken
HA 3 to HB 26 – Passed

Committee Reports:


House Committee Report 03/16/11 F=5 M=6 U=0—->Committee Report
Senate Committee report 05/10/11 F=0 M=4 U=0—–>Committee Report

Voting Reports:


House vote: () Passed 3/31/2011 5:50:13 PM——->Voting Record
Senate vote: () Passed 6/1/2011 4:40:24 PM——->Voting Record

Fiscal Notes:


Fiscal Note——->Fiscal Note

Engrossed Version:


Engrossment——->Engrossment

Actions History:

Jun 08, 2011 – Signed by Governor
Jun 01, 2011 – Passed by Senate. Votes: Passed 21 YES 0 NO 0 NOT VOTING 0 ABSENT 0 VACANT
May 10, 2011 – Reported Out of Committee (EDUCATION) in Senate with 4 On Its Merits
Apr 05, 2011 – Assigned to Education Committee in Senate
Mar 31, 2011 – Passed by House of Representatives. Votes: Passed 38 YES 0 NO 1 NOT VOTING 2 ABSENT 0 VACANT
Mar 31, 2011 – Amendment HA 3 – Passed in House by Voice Vote
Mar 31, 2011 – Amendment HA 2 – Stricken
Mar 31, 2011 – Amendment HA 1 – Stricken
Mar 31, 2011 – Amendment HA 3 – Introduced and Placed With Bill
Mar 22, 2011 – Amendment HA 2 – Introduced and Placed With Bill
Mar 16, 2011 – Reported Out of Committee (EDUCATION) in House with 5 Favorable, 6 On Its Merits
Mar 16, 2011 – Amendment HA 1 – Introduced and Placed With Bill
Jan 25, 2011 – Introduced and Assigned to Education Committee in House

DONE DEAL !! SIGNED BY MARKELL June 8 , 2011 !!! I was shock that made it through Dover that quick! However , a unique political card was played

On to requiring all traditional school districts, Votech districts and charter school boards to record the public session of their board meetings.

In comes H.B.#23 introduced January 23, 2013 and yep, Kilory wrote the rough draft and ask Red Hudson to introduce it. She ask that I seek other sponsors and cosponsors  and I did! Sadly H.B# 23 was used as a political football for two years dying at the end of the 146th legislative session! H.B. 23 made it out of house education committee and house approbations committee and was desk-drawer veto by Speaker of The House Pete! Hudson was backed in a corner by others pushing her to support certain legislation she didn’t agree with. H.B 23 was held hostage! * by this time Capital School District join Red Clay and Christina to voluntarily record their meetings! 

My Blog post March 24, 2015 ; H.B.23 returns from the dead re: H.B. 61 On May 06 ,2015 is mustard Housed Education Committee

And in comes 2016 : * by this time Delmar, Brandywine ,Colonial and Appoquinimink School districts join the other district who volunteered to record their ,board meetings and do make note, I lobbied board members at each of the school districts. Also make note. every traditional public school districts in New Castle County was on board voluntarily.  

May 11, 2016 – Passed by Senate. Votes: Passed 20 YES 0 NO 0 NOT VOTING 1 ABSENT 0 VACANT
Mar 23, 2016 – Reported Out of Committee (EDUCATION) in Senate with 1 Favorable, 4 On Its Merits
Mar 10, 2016 – Assigned to Education Committee in Senate
Mar 10, 2016 – Passed by House of Representatives. Votes: Passed 40 YES 0 NO 0 NOT VOTING 1 ABSENT 0 VACANT
May 06, 2015 – Reported Out of Committee (EDUCATION) in House with 4 Favorable, 7 On Its Merits
Mar 24, 2015 – Introduced and Assigned to Education Committee in House

A special thanks goes to Rep Hudson (Publius relax, another blog post will follow) and all the sponsors and cosponsors. John Young thank you for all your support (you too Liz ) in the initial movement bring Christina on board with that board policy change. Rep Kim Williams , you were my rock! Yvonne thanks for the down to the wire rally. Kevin, thank you for all your support! 

As you can see this was a 7 years journey full of ups and downs and many setbacks! Will it make a difference, the ability for the public and legislators to listen to recordings of board meeting? I think so! And one of the bonuses is, the public can hear this month’s meeting and know what will be voted on next month. Before, meetings minutes (printed) of current month’s board meeting wasn’t public until they were approved at the next meeting. Do make note, the recordings are not official minutes but only a meanings to communicate and more effectively engage the community.

I’ve been “actively” involved in the Delaware education issues since 1995 and blogging since 2006 with over 2 million visits! I wanted to make sure I left some “tangible” behind when I depart this Earth. Sadly I had to use ugly blog tactics along the way. But so remember , the non-verbal obscenities of the Delaware way where money and powers pushes the little guy aside if far worst the my verbal abuse!

If anything, I represent one person who can fight his way through they political system without special interest lobbyist but with friends new and old and those who believe in transparency of our public schools and government.

More to come ………….. Now I am free to tell an amazing story about Johnny can’t read!      

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5 responses to “Kilroy’s one-man fight for transparency of Delaware’s school boards

  1. Where is your damn reblog button Kilroy? 😉

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  2. they ought to just Periscope the meetings

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Kilroy fights for the right of transparency in public schools.

    The rest of us fought for the right to ……PARTY…………

    Like