Here's the KIRO-tv news story from Thanksgiving Day.
If you watch the story, you will see me being more than fair. Frankly, that was a mistake on my part. I am vehemently against this action, no matter Nyland's qualifications. His experience and qualifications are NOT the only considerations for a superintendent for this district.
This is wrong for so many reasons. Read the agenda item (and note who sponsored it).
1) Even if he was the best person, why the secrecy?
2) Even if he was the best person, why have the vote take place on Wednesday with no real public discussion? (It's an Intro/Action item in one which is generally ONLY for emergencies). What's the emergency?
3) The Board had an Executive Session on Monday that carried over to Tuesday. That Tuesday they had been scheduled to have a Committee of the Whole meeting but it was cancelled. So there was no effort to even allow notification to parents or the public.
4) The district does NOT have to do a large national search; they could do a smaller regional one. Again, just like Susan Enfield, if Nyland is the right person for the job, they'll pick him.
5) I've been in committee meetings with extensive discussion on attributes, etc. Something has changed because the Board has been steadily moving forward on a search.
Here's a very aware comment from one reader that nails the main point of why this appointment should not happen.
The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior and this issue must be explored before hiring Nyland.
One is the Gates Foundation preschool grant that the Superintendent "accidentally" signed.
The other is the massive student data breach of over 7500 Special Education students' records in early November.
Here's the problem. It's all good and well that Nyland apologized for both. But neither was just some faux pas. Both have real consequences to this district and its students.
It's what he left out of those apologies that is the real question of his leadership.
In the case of the Gates Foundation grant, he said this:
To senior staff:
We also have a protocol for recognizing and correcting errors such as these. General Counsel for the District will make you aware of those steps.
Wait? If you have an established protocol, whose job was it to go over it with the Superintendent? He says he didn't know about it; whose job was it to go over this kind of information with him? Whose job was it to track grants? What about the role of Ron English, Legal Counsel, on both issues? What about the role of Ken Gotsch, in Finance, for the Gates Foundation grant?
In the case of over 7500+ student records being given out, here's his leadership:
We apologize once more for this error and are taking steps to prevent such an event from occurring again.
Not one specific. Who was the person in Special Education responsible for sending those files to the Legal department? Who in Legal sent them onto the law firm that ultimately delivered them to the guardian of the student in question? Twice?
I'm sure staff is very happy about a boss who will not hold them accountable for gross errors.
It's baffling that the Board would want this, though.
And, you do realize that he has been lying or mistaken that ALL parents whose had a student affected by the data breach have been notified. The Superintendent said (and Communications confirmed to me) that notification has only been electronic (via e-mail).
Do we all honestly believe all Sped parents have e-mail and/or read the district website? How would you feel if it were your child?
The whole thing stinks on ice and it's appalling.
If this follows thru, this is the start of the takeover of the district. If anyone thinks they have little traction now as parents, just wait to see what will come.
I ask you to consider sending a message of concern (or even outright dissension) over this action. If you can, attend the Board meeting with signs. (I'll try to have some props to help.)
This is one time when you absolutely should rise up.
Please take the time this weekend to make your voice heard: