Outgoing Accompaniment Administrator Janet Barresi has created a new abettor accompaniment administrator position and assassin the bedmate of a top Apprenticeship Administering official to ample it, adopting questions about cronyism.
State Rep. Jason Smalley, R-Stroud, alleged it “a acceptable ol’ boy hire” and is calling for the actual abandonment of Barresi, her accepted admonition Kim Richey and Larry Birney, Richey’s bedmate and the new abettor accompaniment superintendent.
Smalley additionally alleged for an actual hiring and battlefront benumb to booty aftereffect at the Oklahoma Accompaniment Administering of Apprenticeship because Barresi was defeated in June’s primary election.
“This is capricious and accomplishes nothing, it hurts accessible apprenticeship and decisions like this should be larboard until the new administrator is affidavit in,” Smalley said.
Barresi aftermost anniversary assassin Birney, a career law administering official, to be abettor accompaniment administrator of accreditation and acquiescence at the Oklahoma Accompaniment Administering of Education.
Accreditation official resigns
Lynn Jones, a longtime bounded accreditation administrator who was answer aftermost year to controlling administrator of accreditation, accommodated over the matter.
“I was surprised,” Jones told the Tulsa World on Wednesday. She said Barresi alleged her into her appointment on Sept. 15 and a her that she had created the position and assassin Birney to ample it. Jones said Barresi told her that Birney would be her new supervisor.
On Sept. 17, Jones said she submitted her abandonment to Arch of Agents Joel Robison because he had been her actual boss.
“I bent that wouldn’t be a acceptable bearings for me. I was uncomfortable,” she said. Jones had been the arch of the accreditation administering for 13 months and was a bounded accreditation administrator for eight years above-mentioned to that.
She said that, to her knowledge, Birney has no accessible apprenticeship experience.
Said Smalley: “I accept alone formed with Lynn; she is acutely a and able in what she does. She has an affluence of ability and was an amazing ability to myself and all of the schools she served.
“It seems to me that we would appetite to accumulate our best and brightest aing to us to acquiesce a beneath of a acquirements ambit appear November back a new baton takes office. To alter addition and actualize a new position with alone six weeks larboard is blamable and shows that the SDE, a authoritative monster, is out of control.”
Birney was an administrator with the San Antonio Police Administering for 35 years. He fabricated account back he accommodated as controlling administrator for the Council of Law Administering Apprenticeship and Training in Ada in 2011 afterwards three years there. The abandonment came afterwards a academic console was formed to investigate his conduct.
Richey, who now serves as accepted admonition for the accompaniment Apprenticeship Department, served as accessory administrator and accepted admonition at CLEET beneath Birney. They affiliated in 2012.
“I don’t catechism his law administering acquaintance — I catechism his apprenticeship ability and abilities for this anew created position,” Smalley said.
“My catechism is why we are hiring individuals that accept no K-12 apprenticeship acquaintance to appear in and now be in allegation of the accreditation standards of our schools,” Smalley said.
Birney’s resume, which the World acquired from the Apprenticeship Department, lists no able acquaintance in apprenticeship but a master’s amount in educational administering from Texas A&M University at Kingsville and a doctor of apprenticeship amount in educational administration from the University of Texas at San Antonio.
Smalley said: “As of appropriate now, our standards are accountable to change in Oklahoma. We charge to accumulate the best accomplished bodies we accept to advice with the transition. That is what’s best for our schools and our accouchement in Oklahoma. Not hiring spouses and accompany to defended jobs.”
Smalley additionally acclaimed the banking impact, as Birney’s abject bacon is $90,000 and his allowances amalgamation costs addition $14,000, according to the Apprenticeship Department.
“As a administrator every year academy allotment is a top priority,” Smalley said. “It apropos me back the accompaniment Apprenticeship Administering adds a $90,000 bacon and again continues to ask for added and added operational costs.”
Robison responded to the Tulsa World’s questions about the amount on Wednesday.
Barresi’s arch of agents said she created the position because she didn’t feel bounded accreditation admiral were able or had the all-important ability to investigate austere allegations fabricated adjoin bounded academy commune personnel.
“One of the affidavit for the appoint is that we accept all sorts of allegations about abeyant misconduct, atrocity out in the schools of the state,” Robison said. “There are some of those that we currently accept ongoing, and the administrator believes that in adjustment to absolutely professionally abode those allegations and do able investigations and to ensure that they are done professionally, that’s why she capital addition with Dr. Birney’s ability in this position.
“Our acceptable bounded accreditation admiral are actual accomplished in abounding areas. They accept a lot of assorted backgrounds, but administering able investigations is not one of them.”
Robison beneath to say how abounding districts such allegations involved, but he did say the attributes of the allegations is “very serious.”
Asked why the allegations couldn’t be referred to bounded commune attorneys or the accompaniment Attorney General’s Office, Robison responded that not all of them complex atrocity of a bent nature.
He additionally acclaimed that the accompaniment Apprenticeship Administering has added affiliated couples as employees.
“To accomplish a case for cronyism — you accept to accomplish the case that Dr. Birney was not qualified,” Robison said.
Position wasn’t advertised
He said the administering never advertised the position to accede added applicants because “the administrator believes he is awful able to do the assignment that is in the job description.”
Robison additionally said the accompaniment Lath of Apprenticeship was not accustomed any beforehand apprehension that the position was actuality created or of Birney’s hiring because that isn’t required.
Republican Joy Hofmeister exhausted Barresi in the June primary and will face Democrat John Cox in the November accepted election. The champ of that chase is set to accomplish Barresi in appointment appear January.
The accompaniment Legislature bare the accompaniment Lath of Apprenticeship of its admiral to accept hiring and battlefront at the Apprenticeship Administering four years ago. That law additionally alone the claim to column accompaniment apprenticeship jobs and gave the accompaniment administrator of accessible apprenticeship sole hiring power.
The Legislature crafted the law afterwards Barresi’s aboriginal accompaniment lath affair became advancing over her proposed hiring of three key agents members, including her above attack manager, Jennifer Carter. Two accompaniment lath members, who accept back been replaced by appointees of Gov. Mary Fallin, questioned Barresi about the actuality that those three recommended hires had already been administering accompaniment advisers alike admitting they were actuality paid by a clandestine nonprofit group, Communities Foundation of Oklahoma.
The lath additionally alleged into catechism the recommended candidates’ abilities and proposed salaries.
Gov. Mary Fallin rebuked the board’s accomplishments and the Legislature took action.
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