Pine Bluff School District superintendent Jerry Payne recently submitted his responses to a set of written directives presented to him at the Dec. 20 regular monthly meeting of the Pine Bluff School Board.
The responses were distributed to board members in tabbed three ring binders at the body’s Jan. 17 meeting.
This is the first of a two part series of articles presenting the text of each directive and a discussion of each of Payne’s written responses.
Provide the Director of Technology with all information that should be posted on both of the District’s web sites to include Personnel Policies for Certificated and Classified Personnel, the current pay scales for Certified and Classified Personnel, names, positions, and salaries for all District employees 2011-2012; to be posted on both of the District’s web sites.
Payne informed the board that he and his staff had already provided the requested information to Rodney Riles, the district’s director of technology, giving dates for when the various documents were allegedly provided to him.
“Information has been provided to the Director of Technology,” Payne said in his written response. “However, the requested information has not been followed through in placing the documents in a timely manner on the District web site. Please note the current Director of Technology has been in his role in the District six years, the documentation requested for posting has been a requirement of State of Arkansas Commissioners Memo #FIN-12-031 (4.03) requires posting of Certified and Classified Staff salaries to be posted every year by September 15th. It is the Directors job to know and update all required postings.”
“Attached you will find memo letters from the Director of Finance confirming salary schedules for Certified and Classified Staff dated September 15, 2011 and January 6, 2012,” Payne said in his written response.
Payne provided copies of three memos from Director of Finance Pam Winkler to Riles; one dated Sept. 15 to the Arkansas Department of Education Financial Accountability office along with a Sept. 16 dated acknowledgement receipt from the office confirming that the district had posted the 2011-2012 salary schedules on its website as of the Sept. 15 deadline; and two dated Jan. 6, 2012.
Payne also provided a copy of a memo dated Jan. 4, from Kelvin Gragg, district director of federal programs, to Riles.
In the memo Gragg asserts that he had previously provided Riles with information that was to be placed on the district’s two websites and that Riles had yet to place the information on the sites.
Finally, Payne included a memo dated Jan. 4, from Mary Harvey, district director of human resources, to Riles, in which she lists the titles and dates of a series of public announcements and job postings from the human resources department to be posted to the district website.
“Mr. Riles, as of this date, no material is listed on either website that were given to your department for posting,” Harvey wrote in the memo.
Provide evidence of newspaper or other public media advertisement for positions of Classified and Certified employment openings in the District and positions that have been filled since July 1, 2011.
Payne presented the board with documentation of advertisements for job positions dated Jul. 12, Jul. 13, Jul. 29, Aug. 1, Aug. 15, Sept. 9, Sept. 29, Oct. 14 and Nov. 5, 2011.
“In addition, job postings are listed by position for your review as requested in your Directives #3,” Payne said in his written response.
Payne’s documentation includes copies of checks, advertising orders and purchase orders documenting the placement of job posting advertisements in the Pine Bluff Commercial for positions within the Pine Bluff School District.
Provide amounts of money paid for sick leave, vacation days, etc. to administrators (Mr. Frank Anthony, Mr. Melvin Bryant, Mrs. Mary Morgan, Mr. Doug Brown, and Ms. Barbara Warren) who left the district June 2011.
Payne provided the board with a listing of unused vacation pay for the named former district employees for the period July 1, 2010 to June 30, 2011.
“Please note these individuals left the district prior to my beginning as school superintendent,” Payne said in his response. “However, please find the information listed in alphabetical order. In addition, we have provided APSCN documentation as a supplement for your review.”
The information provided by Payne showed that Frank Anthony was paid $20,833.20 in unused vacation pay for the period July 1, 2010 to June 30, 2011; Doug Brown was paid $8,768.89; Melvin Bryant was paid $792.26; Andreyetta Dennis was paid $2,457.52; Mary Morgan was paid $2,651.81; and Barbara Warren received no unused vacation pay compensation.
Provide the board with an update of all pending legal issues and cases filed against the District.
Payne said that the district’s retained attorney, Spencer Robinson, of Ramsay, Bridgforth, Robinson, and Raley, LLP, informed him that the district has three pending cases as of mid-January that include:
1. Pine Bluff School District, et al vs. Hemphill, Mac & Jamie s., U.S.C. No. 5:11-CV-024BSM.
“This case is involving expulsion of a student after he physically attacked an administrator,” Payne wrote in his response.
2. Pine Bluff School District vs. Lee, Vicki, et al, Jefferson County Circuit Court No. CV-2008-679-2.
“This case involves several teacher allegations of non-payment for non-instructional time in school years 2003-2008,” Payne wrote.
3. Pine Bluff School District vs. Taylor, Cathy; EEOC, Charge No. 846-2011-75113.
“We will provide EEOC with information they requested,” Payne wrote.