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Cape Gazette
Lewes, Delaware
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August 1, 1997     Cape Gazette
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August 1, 1997

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Cape Continued from page 1 per today. The inaccuracies re- garding board action on my con- tract and your misrepresentation of Wes Stack as an administrator in the school district were inex- cusable as the information could have easily been checked. The fact that you printed a small re- traction about the contract issue does not negate your negligence in printing false information. "Then again last Friday, you printed more inaccurate informa- tion. After this second time of not checking facts, I believe you are purposefully attempting to dis- credit me, the school district, and the board of education." Skeen's first reference is to a story that appeared in May, in which the Cape Gazette reported that the board voted not to roll over her contract, when in fact, her contract was not submitted with the other administrators' contracts up for renewal. Stack, whose office was located in the district office administra- tion building, said this week that although he was paid on a teacher's salary, he was not a tra- ditional classroom teacher. His job responsibilities included demonstrating technology to chil- dren, setting up training for teach- ers, providing community tech- nology services such as classes, and researching software and hardware that he later demonstrat- ed to district staff. He also taught some of the adult classes offered through the district's technology services. Stack began his new po- sition at the Milford School Dis- trict on Monday, July 25. Shu- pard said that his position was ad- vertised within the district, inter- views have taken place, and the board will approve someone for the position during its Aug. 14 meeting. Shupard expressed sur- prise that Stack voiced criticism of the district. "We did not have prior knowledge of his dissatisfac- tion prior to reading it the paper - no one did," said Shupard. The board, she said, was aware only that Stack had been offered and accepted a job with a longer annu- al contract in the Milford district. "The comments [Stack made] in the paper about leadership were very general," said Shupard. "Certainly we are willing to ad- dress any leadership or communi- cation concerns with our staff on specific issues." Shupard did not agree with Stack's assessment that board members do not receive enough good input because too few members circulate in the schools. In the past five years in particular, she said, members have made exceptional efforts to be in the buildings. Staff members, she said, "often see board members in the schools. That's something we've worked on very, very hard." In fact, she noted, the time involved in such activities is diffi- Come to Dover Downs Slots where the air. is cool and the slots are Wh 1,000 rnt hot s ti,, in for your chance to An our hot summer jackttts... e a $20,000 Sized Boat Jaciq,ot, a $25,000 Vehicle JaciqJot, $150,O00 Cash, or win cash in a flash dmiag our Sirra' Summer Giveaway. Dover Downs Sbts has smething for everyone. Open Monday. Saturday 8:00 AM to 2:00 AM Surday, 1:00 Phi to 2:00 AM. Directions From the Beach: Follow Delaware Route I North to Route 13 North. Dover is approximately 45 nfrautes. T Fts TO Fur TIns S ROUTE 13 DOVER, DE * 1-80-711-5882 cult but members go to the schools anyway. "We all have jobs," said Shupard. "In order for some of us to do this, we have to close a business. We also have members who take vacation days to be in the schools. We're doing that." Communication strategies, she said, are good. "We're more than happy to discuss specific is- sues," said Shupard. In place, for example, is an open speaking op- portunity for the community at the beginning of each board meeting. One of the few discussion items restricted from that time is a com- plaint involving personnel. Peo- ple also have the opportunity to put specific topics on the board meeting agendas. "And we're working real strongly with the Collaborative Approach to Problem Solving for better communication at all lev- CAPE GAZETTE, Friday, August 1 - August 7, 1997 - els," she said. Stack expressed concern about the number of high- ly skilled administrators who have left the district. Shupard said a few retired, but most went on to career advancement positions. "The board has never been one to stand in the way of anyone who wanted more opportunity," she said. She also disagreed with Stack's claim that much of the Strategic Plan had not been imple- mented. "Many of the things in that plan have been implement- ed," she said. Those things that have not been fully addressed, she said, were because when the refer- endum aimed at providing in- creased local funds was not passed several years ago, the dis- trict had no other way to fund items in the plan. Stack said that the district basi- cally uses traditional teaching 15 strategies. "I don't believe that's accurate," she said. "We don't just buy materials. We provide opportunities for teachers to inter- act, to get inservice training. We certainly have supported addition- al education for all our staff." She said, for example, the district cur- rently is using a new science pro- gram, has begun implementation of site base decision making, and departments in schools are given opportunities to meet so teachers can share teaching techniques and materials. She noted that the board recently deferred imple- menting the new math curriculum until all teachers would have the opportunity to be fully trained in the new materials. "That's an im- portant teaching strategy," she said. She said the board members are working well together and they share the same goals. Betty Ann "Bitsy" mE RE-ELECT ICOCHRAN IAugust 9th Fa/r Independent Life Time Resident Unbiased Straightforward CITY COMMISSIONER Leadership is listening to the problems, asking the questions, and seeking the solutions. As your commissioner I will continue to work diligently toward: Strong Leadership Financial Accountability Parking Management Protecting Our Unique Neighborhoods Revitalization Of Downtown Improvements In Our Infrastructure August 9th 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Paid for by Friends Of Cochran