Public unhappy with BOE

A News-Herald report concerning a Loudon County Board of Education lawsuit was one-sided.

The story relayed indignation from board members because of a lawsuit for violating the Tennessee Open Records Act. A member claimed breaking the law was an accident. If so, there must be a lot of accidental meetings.

I don’t believe this violation of the Sunshine Law was the first. Your report was missing the public’s side of the lawsuit. We are indignant that our tax money will be used to defend an elected body who broke the law and ignores its own policies and guidelines.

In reality, there are very few taxpaying members of the public who attend BOE meetings or even follow its actions. When they choose to take advantage of their right to speak during the public comment period, they are often treated as an imposition, sometimes rudely, and very little attention, if any, is paid to the speaker by most of the board members.

It’s rather obvious Director of Schools Jason Vance runs the show and the board pretty much defers to him.

Besides not adhering to the law related to open meetings, the BOE continues to violate its own meeting policy requiring the monthly workshop and monthly meeting be held on different nights in different weeks. In violation of its own policy, the BOE continues to hold both meetings on the same date, denying the public the right to see and review new information.

Of course, I’m just a taxpaying part of the public. Our ideas and concerns don’t seem important to the BOE.

Susan Gingrich