BIPPS questions apparently caused reflection
I wrote yesterday about a problematic announcement of a short-notice meeting of the Kentucky Board of Education to evaluate and select a search firm to help find the next Kentucky Commissioner of Education. I listed a number of concerns including the fact that several of the events on the agenda for this May 7, 2015 meeting in Louisville were to be held in private, closed session. That meant neither the public nor the press would be able to observe the discussions, which I didn’t think was appropriate.
Now, the Kentucky Department of Education just released News Advisory 15-047 which has a revised agenda showing virtually all of the meeting will now be open to the public. Here is the revised agenda:
I. Call to Order, 8 a.m. ET
II. Roll Call
III. Discussion of Characteristics for the Next Commissioner — Gene Wilhoit, Facilitator (8:05 – 10 a.m. ET; Open Session)
IV. Search Firm Interview Process (10 a.m. ET; Open Session)
V. Deliberations on Search Firm Presentation (Open Session)
VI. Consideration of a Motion to Select a Search Firm to Conduct the Commissioner of Education Search (Open Session)
VII. Lunch and Discussion of KBE Members’ Attendance at KSB and KSD Graduation Ceremonies (Open Session)
VIII. Conversation with Selected Vendor on Process/Timeline for Search (Open Session)
IX. Discussion with Search Firm on Potential Candidates for Commissioner (Closed Session)
This is certainly an improvement, but I still have concerns about the rather rushed program outlined above and other issues, as well.
For one thing, it seems like an awfully fast paced process to generate a Request for Proposals (RFP) bid to prospective search firms and to have that processed to the point where the board can make a final selection in only one month’s time (Commissioner Holliday announced he was leaving during the April 1, 2015 Kentucky Board of Education meeting and the board voted for an RFP release later that same day). After all, an RFP has to be advertised for a certain period of time so prospective bidders will have a chance to learn of the opportunity and generate a proposal.
Something else rather curious is that the education department pulled its original news release about the short-notice board meeting, issued as News Advisory 15-046, completely off of its web site. The department then substituted the revised agenda with the same News Release 15-046 number and e-mailed it out earlier today.
However, when I went to the Kentucky Department of Education’s web site to find the new release’s web address for you, I learned that the revised News Release about the short-notice meeting is now News Advisory 15-047 in the web site.
Even more incredible, the old 15-046 number has been assigned to another, completely unrelated news item that is dated back in April. How does an April item replace a May item and steal that May item’s news release number? That doesn’t seem right to me.
And, removing the original news release makes it impossible to determine exactly what the original version said and how that got changed.
Also, I wonder: is a news release, once released, a public record? Can/should a public record be deleted like this once issued?
Anyway, stay tuned.