Tuesday, September 14, 2010

MVRCS Posts Meeting Agenda at www.cityofmalden.org

Correction: Our apologies, we apparently misunderstood a readers comments (see below) regarding the posting of the agenda for tomorrow evenings agenda. As you can see the reader makes mention of not having seen it there before, we mistook that to mean that the agenda was not normally posted but in hindsight it appears the person posting the comment was equally unclear as to what is typically done regarding the agenda. It seems that it may actually be a case of the agenda being posted on their attorneys letterhead for the first time? We are unsure but according to readers comment, the agenda is typically posted as required by law. Our apologies for the mistaken information as it was not done intentionally but in error. Please forgive us and thank you both the poster who informed us of the posted Agenda and the poster who corrected our information. You are both appreciated as we couldn't do this without you.
"There is a board meeting Wednesday night at 7pm. If you go to the city website: www.cityofmalden.com and click on the left for the meetings you can get a detailed agenda for that night-something I have never seen posted there before. It is interesting what they plan to discuss in Executive Session. They must be running really scared to post this!'

Our always well informed Andrew25 was kind enough to give us a heads up (although the above post is not his but as usual, he knows these things before anyone else) regarding MVRCS first attempt at following the laws regarding the 'Open Meeting' laws. The agenda can be found at www.cityofmalden.org under the 'Meetings' tab on the left (I believe). While we have been slotted for discussion during the 'Executive Session' (see below for the laws governing the Board entering into Executive Session), make note that 'Transportation' has also been identified as a subject matter. According to our sources, the transportation laws require MVRCS to provide transportation for students who reside 2 driven (not linear as the school has been doing) miles from the school. One would expect that this information will be transmitted to the public but we will see on Wednesday evening.

While a few of you continue to question our insistence on remaining anonymous, MVRCS has provided us with support for our decision. For the first time (to our knowledge) MVRCS has submitted an agenda for the Board Meeting that will be held Wednesday, September 15, 2009. In that agenda they have identified their intent to seek legal counsel regarding this site and their allegations of slander and libel against the creators of this blog. While no person, business, or organization wants to see negative information being written about them, this is as perfect of an example that one could ask for to support our belief that the Board and Administration are not open to criticisms or questions regarding their actions. Their attempt at bullying or intimidating us will not work.

We also feel the need to draw your attention to the irony of this matter as they have clearly been in violation of a number of laws it is humorous to us that they would threaten legal action against others. Furthermore, in many ways we would welcome their bringing legal action against us as by doing so they would be required under discovery laws to allow our attorneys access to all forms of communication and documentations related to our allegations against them. Under libel and slander laws, they would be required to prove our statements were not only false but written with malice or ill will against them and/or the school and that they suffered as a result. As we have written repeatedly, we mean no harm to the school but rather are attempting to preserve it and hold them accountable under to the laws that govern them. Unfortunately, the schools ethical integrity was already in question before the creation of this blog and can be well documented and spoken to.

As a final point to this discussion we draw from the U.S. Constitution, specifically the First Amendment and the freedom of speech, freedom of the press, right to peaceably assemble, and the right to petition for a governmental redress of grievances (i.e. the right to make a complaint to, or seek the assistance of, one's government without fear of punishment or reprisals).

From: http://www.doe.mass.edu/charter/governance/adminguide.pdf

Minutes must be taken and votes recorded through roll call votes during executive session. Records remain secret only so long as publication may defeat the lawful purposes of the executive session. G.L. c. 30A, § 11A½(7).
Under G.L. 30A, § 11A½, Boards may hold executive sessions only in seven limited situations, including:

1. To discuss the “reputation, character, physical condition or mental health rather than the professional competence” of a particular individual.
2. To consider the discipline or dismissal of an employee, or to hear complaints or charges brought against a public officer, employee, staff member, or individual.

NOTE: If the Board is meeting in executive session under either of these two prior exceptions, the individual in question is afforded certain rights, including the right to have notice of the meeting, the right to be present, the right to have counsel attend, and the right to speak on his/her own behalf.

3. To discuss strategy relating to litigation or collective bargaining.
4. To discuss the deployment of security personnel or devices.
5. To investigate charges of criminal misconduct or to discuss the filing of criminal complaints.
6. To consider the purchase, exchange, lease, or value of real property, if an open discussion may have a detrimental effect on the negotiating position of the governmental body with a person, firm, or corporation.
7. To comply with the provisions of any general or special law or federal grant-in-aid requirements.

If a Board of Trustees does not comply with the Open Meeting Law, it may face a variety of sanctions. Three or more registered voters, as well as the Attorney General or the District Attorney may bring suit to enforce the Open Meeting Law by filing a complaint in the Superior Court or the Supreme Judicial Court alleging a violation of the Law by any governmental body. The court may then enter an order requiring that the board be in compliance with the Open Meeting law in the future, invalidating any action taken at any meeting in which the Law has been violated, and/or requiring that the records of the meeting be made public, in addition to any other remedy available under the law.


Although unable to reach the appropriate person (he is out of the office today and tommorrow), we have been informed that although the school is reimbursed by the state for transportation as they are a 'regional' charter school, they are also allowed under the laws to charge a transportation fee. 

As for the transportation issue, we direct you to this site http://www.doe.mass.edu/charter/governance/adminguide.pdf page 43. We have not verified what exactly this means but MVRCS is a 'Regional' charter school...Does this mean that they are charging parents AND being reimbursed by the state? Looking into this as we are unsure.

Regional Transportation Reimbursement
In accordance with G.L. c. 71, § 89(ff), a regional charter school is reimbursed for transportation costs incurred in transporting students who reside outside of the school’s local school district and in the charter school’s region as specified in its charter.  To be eligible for reimbursement through the state regional transportation reimbursement program, a charter school must:
be designated a regional charter school by the Board of Education; and
have a charter that provides for the transportation of all students who reside in the charter school’s designated region but outside the district in which the charter school is located.
The reporting mechanism for reimbursement under this program is identical to that used for reimbursement for within-district transportation. No reimbursement is available for a charter school that provides transportation for students residing outside of its designated region.
A charter school transports children living outside the local school district but within the region specified in its charter. After the end of the school year, the school will complete a report provided by the Department to document the costs associated with their regional transportation program. The Department will reimburse those costs, subject to appropriation, in the next academic school year.
Full details about transportation obligations and reimbursement programs can be found in Charter School Technical Advisory 07-2: Transportation, available online at http://www.doe.mass.edu/charter/tech_advisory/07_2.html. Charter schools may also contact the Coordinator of Research and Finance in the Charter School Office for


  1. Do me a favor. Don't use my screen name in your blogs. While you're at it could you take down my lonely post from the globe comments?

    So last week you were just a concerned ex CIA intelligence officer and now you're an abused parent of a MVRCS student? Which is it?

  2. There is an agenda for EACH and EVERY board meeting, therefore your knowledge is not correct (which seems to be a theme here on this ridiculous blog). Getting a lawyer is the way to go, since you (whomever you are)are not willing to come out of your protective shell. You write lies and you can't back up your information.

    Also you feel the board and administration is NOT open to critism, it seems you are not either. If someone posts a blog that you do not like you argue and push your ideals onto to other people.

    Don't like the school, move one already!! Stop complaining and worry about more important things in life, cancer, world hunger, poverty, global warming.

  3. There is nothing more important than your children and their education. If you can make it better instead of just "moving on" (which sounds easier than it is when it comes to uprooting your children) why not try? Why is it so difficult for the school to move on with different board members therefore different ideas after 13 years? The foundation has been laid so let's build on it. The charter itself cannot change so time to get some new blood.

  4. I'm waiting for my apology. That's not even my post!

  5. Freedom of speech and standing up for our children is just what the school can't tolerate.

  6. That post above from someone supporting the board is obviously either a school administrator or a board member themself. Or another one of the school's "clanlike" families

  7. To the board member (or colleague) who posted above:

    Isn't it wonderful that this blog has created, for the first time, a public forum for both sides to state their case? Those for and against each issue can write here their reasoning and evidence for all to evaluate. I don't see what's wrong with someone creating a forum for dialog, whether that person is anonymous or not.

    If you disagree with what has been posted, please take a few minutes to post a reasoned response. For instance, you provided data that there is an agenda for every board meeting. This is useful. The remained of your post is little more than an ad hominem rant.

    Even more helpful would be if you responded directly to the post's assertion that the board agendas were seldom (or never) posted IN ADVANCE of the board meetings, as they have been this week. Could you fill in the data for us on that point?

  8. And, by the way, I am sympathetic to the parents who don't want to be identified for fear of reprisals. That is fine. Although I look forward to the day that they feel safe enough to identify themselves.

    But the administration and board members really should have nothing to fear: Could you all please have the courtesy to post under your own names and Google accounts?

    Surely you can see the need for credible commentary in response to questions raised on this blog. And you as school officials are best in a position to provide such comments -- if you will just identify yourselves.

    You might be able to set us straight when we have misunderstood something, but again only if we know who is writing!

  9. One more idea:

    If the board and administration is concerned that this forum is biased or inappropriately managed, why not set up your own and place it prominently on the MVRCS home page? You could simply have a place for parents and students to write in with concerns, questions, or stories. And you would be able to respond directly to them, as would other parents.

    When you think about it, why didn't that happen years ago? It would be something like a FAQ document on a web site: "Here are some concerns that have been raised in the past, as well as our bets responses to them."

    Seems fair to me.

  10. Those that are yacking about the creators of this blogs statement (or mis-statement) regarding the minutes, it seems to me that they at least stepped up and admitted to their mistake (if it was in fact a mistake, I'm still unclear as to the history of the agendas meeting). I'd like to see the administrators or board members step up to one of their mistakes.

  11. To above. That will never happen. The head of the board will never admit to any wrong doing, nor would he ever apologize to anyone. He has never done it in the past, so why start now. He may be smart, but is being smart worth not being liked by so many? I find that pretty sad.

  12. He confuses rigidity for leadership.

  13. Some of my favorite quotes relating to MVRCS:

    "Character is doing the right thing when nobody's looking. There are too many people who think that the only thing that's right is to get by, and the only thing that's wrong is to get caught." ~J.C. Watts

    "If you have integrity, nothing else matters. If you don't have integrity, nothing else matters." ~Alan Simpson

    Laws control the lesser man. Right conduct controls the greater one. ~Chinese Proverb

    You do not wake up one morning a bad person. It happens by a thousand tiny surrenders of self-respect to self-interest. ~Robert Brault

    “Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power.” A. Lincoln

  14. Heard this and thought it fit the creators of this blog perfectly, they are looking for justice, not revenge.

    Revenge is the wrong way to resolve issues, it is short sighted and dangerous.
    Justice is the of restoring order, not furthering the chaos.

  15. Are there term limits for Board Members?

  16. Yes!!! There are term limits for the Board. That should be discussed tonight as well, they are all up for RE-ELECTION, except for one.

  17. MV-You're recycling posts. That's not a good sign. Could you be running out of steam?

  18. Yes, the Board Members have 'limits' but it is solely for the purpose of appeasing the DESE. Mr. Kinnon has given himself and the 5 (out of what, 11) remaining board members life terms (or something to that effect). The DESE and terms of the charter take issue with it so they have been given limited terms but will just begin a new term at the end of their current one.
    The MOST unfortunate part is that according to charter school regulations, the dictator nor any of his followers can not be removed (if I understood the Admin Guide correctly. Notice too numbers 22, 24 & 25. yeah, but no laws are being broken....
    Here is a section of it:

    13. define a number of years that shall constitute a term.
    14. set a specific, reasonable, limit on successive or total terms that a member may serve.
    15. require a formal vote of the Board of Trustees to accept all new members.
    21. not allow an entity other than the Board of Trustees to select or remove trustees.
    22. not allow the Board of Trustees to exercise managerial powers over the day-to-day operations of the school
    24. not allow the Board of Trustees to select, appoint, evaluate, and/or remove the school staff other than school leadership.
    25. not allow membership of a majority of the Board of Trustees to be bound or affected by any other entity.

  19. Andy -
    No idea what you are talking about - recycling posts. Have I created an outline regarding the issues and concerns. Yup. Would posting it once do much to initiate change. Probably not, better for more people to read it. If that is even what you are talking about.
    Excited about tonight? Bringing popcorn? Or scotch?

  20. I was referring to your quotes. How'd you do tonight?