Wednesday, June 15, 2016

New Chief Financial Officer for Seattle Schools

This name had sounded familiar to me but I have never met Ms. Berge.

Seattle Public School Welcomes New Chief Financial Officer JoLynn Berge 

Seattle Public Schools (SPS) hired JoLynn Berge as the district’s Chief Financial Officer. Berge brings extensive experience to the district and will begin her new role on June 15, filling the position vacated by Kenneth Gotsch. 

“We are pleased to announce this appointment and welcome JoLynn to the district. We look forward to her financial leadership and we are excited about the wide breadth of experience she brings to this role,” said Deputy Superintendent, Stephen Nielsen. 
As the Chief Financial Officer, Berge will provide leadership and expertise in financial management and in the business and finance operations of the district. She will be responsible for ensuring an effective management and budget system is in place to support schools. Reporting directly to the superintendent, Berge will oversee the department of finance (Budget, Payroll, Grants, Accounting, Purchasing, Contracts) and audit response. Additionally, she will provide leadership for financial matters related to Human Resources (Employee/Labor Relations, Compensation and Benefits, Substitute Services, Employment, Employee Assistance Program, Leadership Development and the Teacher Incentive Fund). 

Berge has an impressive leadership background in finance and the public sector. She comes to Seattle Public Schools from the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction where she served in numerous different financial leadership roles during her tenure but most recently as the Chief Financial Officer and Assistant Superintendent. 

Previously, she was an Assistant Audit Manager/School Specialist and Assistant State Auditor/Assistant Audit Manager for the Washington State Auditor’s Office and Comptroller for Grays Harbor Public Development Authority. 

Berge has a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with an Accounting Concentration from Longwood University. In addition, Berge serves as the Board President for the Association of Education Finance and Policy and was a Washington Association of School Business Officials Award of Merit recipient.


NO 1240 said...

Ms. Berge's name should sound familiar to you, Melissa. Check your OSPI public record documents related to OSPI, MWSD and Dorn's scheme that allowed the flow of public dollars into charter schools- after the Supreme Court found I 1240 unconstitutional. OSPI staff- including finance and legal- worked with MWSD to circumvent the court's ruling.

There were interesting e-mail exchanges during the month of December that dealt with the issue of Choice Transfer forms. The Choice Transfer forms stunk to high heaven. MWSD's business manager was listed as the parent of all transfer students and MWSD was considered student's place of residence.

Dorn altered ALE rules and allowed the flow of public dollars into charter schools through a small school district named Mary Walker. The school district had of 500 students and the superintendent sat on the Charter Commission.

Randy Dorn's office stands alone and there was not an entity willing to investigate Dorn's actions. Whether Dorn followed appropriate processes and worked within his Rule making authority is a concern to me.

Were individuals in Dorn's office following orders- or were they complicit? I imagine individual(s) that are responsible for $10B should have some idea of laws related to public dollars.

NO 1240 said...

Dorn worked directly with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Washington Charters to undermine our democracy, and Berge was with there. I'm not comfortable.

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