MCCSC closed meetings: How much ‘training’ does a board need?

‘Tis the season to be thankful, so let’s start by saying the Monroe County Community School Corp. did a good job of involving the public when it searched for a new superintendent in 2008.

The board got public input on what qualities to look for in a school leader. When the search was down to three finalists, the board made their names public and had all three take part in community forums. It was a good process with a good outcome: the appointment of J.T. Coopman as superintendent.

Now Coopman is retiring and the process starts again. And some board members are bristling at suggestions that the early stages should be more open – and comply with the Indiana Open Door Law.

After School Matters questioned plans for a closed-door executive session on Tuesday, MCCSC board member Valerie Merriam posted to the Support Our Schools community forum that “the board does, indeed, know what can and cannot be discussed during executive session” and insisted concern about an illegal meeting was “the misconception of the blogger.”

“I want to assure everybody that nothing was discussed at the executive committee meeting that shouldn’t have been discussed,” Merriam said at Tuesday night’s public school board meeting, a few hours after the closed meeting.

Board member Jim Muehling said people who are worried about transparency should “seek help, because they are clueless.” Continue reading