Greece listed 14 reasons why they wouldn’t renew his contract.
Superintendant Issues prepared by Frank Oberg and Joe Moscato regarding Steve Achramovitch
June 2010 evaluation as Supt. of Greece School District. “ This negative evaluation is why, a majority of the board gave Steve notice to seek other employment on June 30, 2010, he would be terminated. as you read these 14 items, bear in mind that Steve was defenseless and guilty as charged.”
1. School Visits.. Steve promised prior to his hiring that he would regularly visit schools to find out what is going on. I have reports that this is not happening with regularity. For example, one individual said that he has visited her school only twice since he has been superintendent and one visit was but for a few minutes.
2. School Improvement Plans…This has been a major initiative of Steve to reform our district. This not a topic that is reported on by Steve to the Board. We are in the dark as to the efficacy of the initiative. We do not know what results or problems or progress is being realized.
3. Schools of Choice/Signature Schools…Approximately two years ago, the BOE passed a motion (5-3 in favor) asking the superintendent to study and report on the viability of this enterprise. He was going to establish a community task force. As of today the BOE has received no report on the status of the motion’s study. A task force does not exist. The educational or organizational value of continuing with this organizational scheme has not been reported or discussed with the BOE. The motion has been ignored.
4.Consulting Hiring…Steve has engaged consultants at GREAT COSTS to the district without a prior conversation with the board. The most glaring example is the engagement of O’Flavahavan Consulting on reading at a projected cost of $1.6 Million over 8 years. The BOE was not consulted ahead of time, data on success in other districts was not presented, the program goals were not outlined, and the implementation of the first year efforts got a mixed reaction from the district’s teachers.
5. Strategic Direction…I do not sense that our superintendent has one in force for the district. I am unaware of any list that details the major issues within, what actions are planned to address these issues, what the status of these issue might be. There is not a focused effort to define problems, report out status to the BOE or the public. We just seem to bounce from pillar to post as circumstances warrant.
6.Capital Plan…A=n overall capital plan does not exist that details the district’s needs (beyond EXCEL), timetable, nor cost of implementation. When discussing the superintendents goals in public session, I raised the concern that a plan needed to be added to his goals. My recollection is that he made a written note at the time but thus far has not added such a plan to his goals nor taken action to prepare one.
7. Loewke/Brill Report… This report languished without district action other than an inconsequential memo presented to the BOE by Mr. Schroeder. By STEVE’s own admission he never read the report until it was brought to light in discussions involving structural failures at Longridge School. There was no action taken to address the concerns raised in the report or report on the status.
8. Contract Negotiations… This is especially troublesome with regard to GTA. The negotiating strategy (based on feedback from BOE members present at some meetings) appeared to be unnecessarily adversarial with a “just say No” approach. Counter claims made by GTA were not revealed to the BOE(according to GTA sources). As HR (Human Resource) experience was presented by STEVE as one of his strengths as a superintendent, leadership in this area has not been displayed. He has repeatedly asked the BOE for “guidance” but has never (to my knowledge) suggested to the board a contract negotiating strategy that might yield a successful result given our circumstances.
9. Operational cost vs. Declining Enrollment; STEVE has not “VOLUNTEERED” a plan to bring expenditures in line with the continuing decline in student enrollment. Any progress in this area has only occurred while under pressure to present a new district operating budget.
10 English Road Pediatrics… In discussions regarding reappointment of the district’s doctor, the potential engagement of this medical office was raised. There was a commitment made by the superintendent to discuss possible engagement of this firm. I am aware that no discussions were ever held with the principal doctor(s) of this practice as promised nor was there any follow up report to the BOE on this commitment.
11. Jakacovitch Termination..This individual’s termination was never fully explained to the BOE. A lawsuit now exists against the district. There is some belief that organized eavesdropping of phone conversations/emails is underway in the district. This eavesdropping practice may have triggered the termination after a phone conversation was monitored between Jakacovitch and former member C. Hubbard.
12. Uniform district wide application of the Code of Conduct…There is no evidence that this policy has been uniformly implemented and enforced throughout our schools. Enforcement appears not to be a priority within the district. I believe this leads to poor classroom environment which in turn leads to an inappropriate learning environment.
13. School Violence…Numerous violent and behavioral incident occur within the district. The superintendent indicated he would establish a committee to study this problem. I am unaware of this having been accomplished. The BOE is left to our own devices to determine if the recent spate of incidents is abnormally high, what the root causes are, or what strategies might be employed to bring this under control.
14. Follow up.. This is a continuing problem on Steve’s part. To illustrate may I remind you that after Steve’s evaluation sheets were presented to him, he said that he would respond to the various comments made therein. A number of months have passed since the evaluation was shared with him and a follow up response has not been presented to the BOE. Lack of follow up is not unique to this item.