Brian’s views on the issues
Recent events like Sandy Hook and DeKalb County have forced school districts to reevaluate their security policies and procedures. While we’ve made some progress in our district by implementing keyless entry and focusing on keeping doors closed at all times (except the front entrance to each school), I think our district can do more. Other local districts have committed funds to put a school resource officer (SRO) at every school and I think we should do the same. While the additional yearly cost for 9 SROs at $450,000 isn’t cheap, I think it would provide added safety and reduce initial response time to a threat.
I’ve been going to district 2 school board meetings for 3 years now. Anyone who has attended has probably noticed the same thing that I did, that the administrators and trustees have a detailed agenda and lot of information in front of them that is not directly discussed in the meeting and not given out to the public. While I doubt there is anything illegal or wrong going on, I think it would be better to provide that information to the public on the district website where the meeting minutes are also published. I think the meeting minutes could also use more details, especially when a vote is not unanimous.
Providing more proactive leadership
While the school board should not micro-manage every action and decision in our district, it does need to be more proactive in solving major issues. I have had two recent disappointments in this regard.
The first is that the band director at Boiling Springs High School left at the end of the 2012-2013 school year to take a similar position in another Spartanburg county school district. In 2010 the band directors and the band booster club created a proposal for the Superintendent and the school board to consider. In the proposal was a request for additional funds (to help purchase uniforms and instruments) and resources (more instructors to help with band class sizes). A response to the proposal was never received.
The second is that the head football coach at Boiling Springs High School resigned with only a few weeks until the first game. I don’t know what the disagreement was between the coach and the administration or if either or both parties were at fault. I don’t know why the coach stepped down or was demoted from athletic director the year before. What I do know is that the situation should have been resolved sooner so that the players didn’t have to deal with a new head coach right before the start of the season.
Another situation that I was disappointed with in 2011 and 2012 was the Title IX complaint. I think that steps could have been taken to work with the parent who had valid concerns and complaints about female sports options and participation. Instead, the federal government was called in to do an investigation which resulted in the district spending a lot of time and resources to provide information.