SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska



Confidentiality. Privacy. Ring a bell?
By Chris Elliott


June 09, 2006

Confidentiality. Privacy. Ring a bell? I was surprised to hear that Mr. Eklund is now the Vice Principal at Kayhi and the search is on for a new principal. I don't have children in the school system anymore, and I quit the School Board just before "the lady that sells the washers, dryers, and stoves at the local outlet" was recalled by parents like the lady who runs all the marathons, so I'm out of the loop (noose?).

As a member of the School Board, I was privy to confidential information about District employees. With regard to personnel issues, it is the absolute duty of the School Board to protect the privacy of District employees. That means you cannot reveal confidential information unless you want to spend the next 20 years battling the NEA, KEA, KLO, ACLU, etc. And that's the way it should be. Personnel discussions are between the employer and the employee. Teachers answer to their building principals, principals answer to the Superintendent, and the Superintendent answers to the School Board. If the employee wishes to discuss a personnel matter in public, then the employee need only request a public hearing and consent to the release of confidential information. Unless that happens, the community will never hear all the facts.

It s plain that Mr. Erdrich's reassignment doesn't elicit the same reaction as that of Mr. Eklund's. Is that because of the negative public statements made by citizens at a Board meeting and reported in the Daily News? If so, I guess the community believes it knows all it needs to know in that case.

Personnel decisions are not made on the basis of whether or not an employee is "liked". There are strict procedures, and employees are afforded the opportunity to contest decisions with which they disagree. The employee is protected by his contract and has many avenues of appeal.

My advice is to dust off those campaign posters and enter the fray.

Chris Elliott
Ketchikan, AK - USA

About: 50+ year resident


Related Viewpoint:

letter Demotion of Principal By Susan Doherty - Ketchikan, AK - USA



Note: Comments published on Viewpoints are the opinions of the writer
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.


Write a Letter -------Read Letters

E-mail the Editor

Stories In The News
Ketchikan, Alaska