Mayor can't fire CT - only the school committee can.
Melrose SC must be made up of very ignorant people! Racist, too!
When a competent reporter shows up in Melrose and starts reporting the truth about the corruption within city hall and school administration, they are swiftly moved out of town,apparently wrote one too many accurate articles about the myriad MPS scandals.
Here's Taymore throwing shade at the former (21-year of distinguished service which you never once saw recognized in Melrose!) METCO director, Doreen Ward, and continuing to do her racist thing (with the full collusion of O'Connell and the disgusting School Committee).
When the US Office of Civil Rights investigators produced the OCR Findings document after a two-year investigation, they stated that Melrose Schools had a pervasive environment of racial hostility created and fostered by the school administration (including the School Committee). This fiasco below is only the tip of the iceberg.
Taymore eliminated the position of the only METCO employee (a distinguished young man of color, a fine MHS grad, who had worked with the Melrose METCO program since 2009 and consistently done excellent work), so that all vestiges of Ms. Ward could be eliminated and a full-on sycophant (the new director) of Taymore's and the administration could be brought in instead. This young man was the only one in the trenches advocating for the METCO students and families, advocating vigorously for each and every one. Meanwhile the interim director sat on her butt and either did nothing or worked with Taymore and her henchmen against the METCO families instead of advocating for them. To add insult to injury, after a lot of protest from METCO parents, Taymore offered a massively lower-paying position to the same young man, just so she could say she did, and of course this was all just for show because the former METCO assistant is not stupid and could not/would not take such a poor offer (which is still being listed on SchoolSpring, since no one else wants to take this). Note: the METCO grant pays plenty for the program, so this was never about money, override or no override! In fact Taymore has been scooping a quarter of a million dollars off of the METCO grant for her own purposes (not servicing METCO students!) ever since she took over as superintendent. This is a program that Melrose has been using and abusing for many years, and from which it has made considerable amounts of money that was not necessarily used as the state intended (but which the state does not have the capacity or will to enforce, like so many other important areas of neglect). These latest examples are only the most egregious--and racist!!!
For all the override/school administration/school committee supporters who fancy themselves as "OneMelrose" goody-two-shoes, they are either seriously deluded or willfully in support of this racism and chronic abuse/neglect. Anything stated publicly is truly Fake News and demonstrates the upside-down nature of Melrose today, where the local "dems" behave quite literally like the most hideous aspects of Trump/GOP.
What the United States Office of Civil Rights said about Melrose in its assessment of a systemic environment of racial hostility is now only worse because those who were supposed to enforce a realignment of basic values did exactly the opposite. Melrose Public Schools is in an even more shameful state of affairs than it was in 2014! Look in the mirror and figure out where you stand in all of this and what you plan to do to rectify it (predicting that most will choose to look the other way and protect the Melrose Dem Status Quo--which means voting for Brodeur, ignoring what happened on Brazil Street, etc., all the while pretending to care about social justice). That's not to say that the raging MAGA types are better, because their vile attitudes should always be condemned. But supporters of this school administration really should be evaluated with actual critical thinking!
Parents upset with Melrose schools over perceived lack of transparency in METCO director’s hiring
By Robby McKittrick
Posted Sep 30, 2019 at 2:49 PM
There is a new METCO director at Melrose Public Schools, but some parents are unhappy with the district’s decision and perceived lack of transparency during the process.
On Aug. 4, METCO parent Darrelle Boyd, whose daughter is a freshman at Melrose High School, wrote a letter to Melrose Superintendent Cyndy Taymore and other parties on behalf of several METCO parents to voice their displeasure with the school district over the “hiring practices” for the new METCO director and former interim director Amy Jackson.
“Several concerns were raised regarding the cultural needs and well-being of students of color, hiring practices and administrative transparency,” Boyd wrote in the letter. “Throughout the five-month tenure of the interim, many unacceptable events occurred resulting in a vote of no confidence among the parents.”
In February, Taymore selected Jackson as interim director to replace the previous METCO director, Doreen Ward, who had been there for 17 years. Boyd said parents disliked Jackson’s behavior as interim director during her five months.
“A few examples include blatant dishonesty, non-participation in an IEP meeting and the police being called to board an elementary school bus, leaving children afraid they would be arrested if they rode the bus again,” Boyd wrote. “All occurrences were reported directly to Superintendent Mrs. Cyndy Taymore.”
Boyd said parents spoke with Taymore “numerous times” about Jackson, and they told Taymore they didn’t want Jackson to be hired for the permanent role. However, to the parents dismay, Taymore hired Jackson over the summer, and parents don’t believe the school district listened to their concerns.
“Our understanding was [Taymore] wanted [Jackson] regardless,” Boyd said. “For us not to have the only person who is representative of the METCO students be a person who is qualified and we have confidence in is unacceptable. We had no input or involvement in hiring. The parents were not in favor of hiring the interim person and made this very clear to the superintendent, and she hired her anyway.”
Some parents complained Taymore didn’t post the position until the end of the school year, which made “the pool very slim.” In addition, parents claimed Taymore lied to them about reaching out to another candidate during the process, which they said never happened.
“I don’t think [Jackson] was the most qualified applicant, and I don’t think the process to get her there was done with the purest of hearts,” METCO parent Demia Wells said, adding the hiring process was “sneaky and not all forthright.” ”[Taymore] lied to the whole parent body.”
Although Boyd and other parents were strongly against the school district hiring Jackson, they are more frustrated the “cultural needs” of the METCO students were not taken seriously.
“We happened to see the flaws in the hiring process,” said Boyd. “Our issues are not necessarily with [Jackson]. We want our voices heard and taken into consideration.”
Boyd said the METCO director position is crucial for their children’s educational experience.
“The only person [our kids] can go to who can understand what it feels like or what they have to go through as METCO students not being members of the Melrose community is the METCO director,” Boyd said. “If she is not someone we have confidence in or is not qualified, she is not going to meet the needs of the students, and she has already proven that.”
“A set process”
Taymore responded to the parents’ accusations and said the hiring process was the “same process” she has used for the last seven years.
“We have a set process here in Melrose,” Taymore asserted. “They do not like who I chose and I understand that. Given the information I had at the time, I made the choice that was in the best interest of the district and my students.”
Taymore said the district was “caught by surprise” when Ward left, and she said she had to delay all hiring decisions due to an override campaign in the winter.
Then, Taymore said the district had to fill five positions in 10 weeks. They first began hiring two principals, two directors and then the METCO director, and she said she went through the usual sequence of events when filling a position.
“I think it’s a difference in opinion,” Taymore said of the parents frustration. “The previous director may have told them they would have more say in the process than they would have.”
Taymore created a search committee to lead the hiring process, and she said it had “plenty of representation.”
There were two METCO parents and two METCO students on the committee, and Taymore said she listened to the feedback of the parents. However, she emphasized she has “sole authority” for hiring, and School Committee Chair Ed O’Connell believes the process was also performed correctly.
“This is her decision,” O’Connell said. “This is the process we use. If she had not adhered to the process we had adhered to for seven years, I would be concerned.”
Taymore explained she had “meet-and-greets” with parents and staff, and she also had private conversations with each candidate. Taymore said she can’t reveal everything about the other applicants’ background, but she believes Jackson was the right candidate for the job.
“She is a pleasure to work with and cares deeply about our kids,” Taymore said. “She was the best match for the district at this point in time. She brings a lot to the table.”
Taymore only gave Jackson a one-year deal, which Taymore explained is not typical, but she said Jackson is “getting a lot done for the district.” Taymore added her staff will be evaluating and monitoring Jackson in her new permanent role.
O’Connell said a small percentage of parents are criticizing the process because they don’t like the decision. However, he further emphasized it was the standard process, which Taymore followed “faithfully.”
“We want to be responsive,” O’Connell said of the parents’ concerns. “We take all of this seriously. This was an open, honest and fair process.”