Thursday, October 31, 2013

Gloucester, VA School Board, Board Policies Questions

Armand A. Fusco, Ed.D.

About the Yankee Institute for Public Policy

The Yankee Institute for Public Policy, Inc. is a nonpartisan educational and research organization
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Part 2 in a 10 part series.

Question 2: Board Policies

Are there any board policies dealing with school corruption? What policies, if
any, have been adopted to prevent corruption, and what policies have been
adopted to monitor school resources most effectively?

Background: Board policies are contained in a policy manual that is a
public document, and it can usually be found on the school website. The
manual is also available in the school central office and in each school. It is
extremely doubtful that any corruption policies will be found, because school
boards do not want the term “corruption” to be found in any school documents;
they are in complete denial or ignorant that corruption could occur in the
district. Even when corruption is found, it is hidden from public view whenever
possible. For example, in the Roslyn incident, the school board voted to keep
the theft from their insurance company; and this deceit cost them thousands of
dollars more.

Admittedly, part of the problem is that school boards are not trained and
educated about the problem of corruption, and state departments of education
and their own association are derelict, even fearful, of providing such training
and education.

However, examining board policies is a critical task for any taxpayer
group or FAC to undertake because it will indicate whether the board has any
concern about preventing school resources from being mismanaged and
protected from corruption. Failure to have such policy statements would be an
unequivocal indication that the board is either in denial or ignorant about the
nature and extent of school corruption; furthermore, it is also a green light for
corrupt acts to be committed.

Proposed Solution: Demand that the school board adopt policies and
practices that clearly manage resources more effectively, and that give the staff
and taxpayers clear evidence that preventing corrupt acts has the highest
priority. Demand too that school employees be trained to act responsibly and
honestly with school resources. Unfortunately, such education and training is
hard to find. School Corruption: Betrayal of Children and the Public Trust  5
provides information and guidelines for any district to become more

responsible with school resources.

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