>Latest Rumor From The School Yard; Has A Current Member Of The Middletown Board Of Education Been Order Removed From Board?

>Seeing how the last rumor from the school yard turned out to be true (the one about Middletown School Superintendent Karen Bilbao resigning), I think I should pass a long the latest rumor that I have recently heard.

It is one that I am a little leery to pass along at the moment because I haven’t been able to confirm it, all of those that I have contacted have denied knowledge of it, but due to the circumstances of the rumor, I don’t find it unusual that people are denying having any knowledge of it.

It is because of the sensitivity of this information that I need to be very careful about what I post and will not at this time, name those involved or what the particular circumstances are that surround those that are involved. I will only say that I trust the source that “leaked” the information to me, the source is extremely credible and I have no reason to doubt the source’s integrity. In time, when the information is made public knowledge everyone will know the details.

So what have I heard that needs to remain such a mystery and that is so sensitive that I can’t give many details at this moment? Well it happens to involve a sitting member of the Middletown Board of Education.

I have been told that earlier this year, a member of the BOE, had an ethics complaint filed against them with the NJ School Ethics Commission and from what I understand it is serious. So serious in fact, that the ethics commissioner on November 15th, ordered the removal of the of the board member from the Middletown Board of Eduction.

It is my understanding that the Middletown school board has 30 days from the time the decision was handed down to act upon it, which means that by the time of the next school board meeting Wednesday night December 15th, an announcement may be made. As of this moment however, no announcement has been made about this on either the NJ School Ethics Commission website or the NJ State Department of Education’s website, so the announcement may not be made until sometime in January.

Until the information about this school board member is posted on either website, spokespeople from each agency have said that they can not answer any of my questions relating to this issue. Neither agency would even comment as to whether or not this board of ed member even had a pending case or an ethics complaint filed against them.

So if this rumor is true, everyone will have to wait until later this month or sometime in early January to find out who may need to be removed from the Middletown Board of Education.

32 Comments

Filed under ethical violations, Middletown Board of Education, NJ School Ethics Commission, NJ State Department Of Education

32 responses to “>Latest Rumor From The School Yard; Has A Current Member Of The Middletown Board Of Education Been Order Removed From Board?

  1. >Not for nothing Mike but to be accurate the last rumor was wrong. You said Mrs. Bilbao had handed in her resignation at the last board meeting, that did not happen.

  2. >Not exactly true anon,She attempted to hand in her resignation I was told but the board asked her to sit on it for a short while.

  3. >Maybe I'm splitting hairs and it's no big deal but you didn't say she "attempted" to hand in her resignation. You said she handed in her resignation.Given the fact that she would stand to have her salary reduced by about $35,000+-, it should come as no surprise to anyone that she is leaving. I say good for her, she is getting while the getting is good.

  4. >No matter what, a huge loss for Middletown. I wish her well.

  5. >Hey Mike, this was posted almost a month ago on NJO. It mentions that Middletown schools would be in the papers because of an impending crisis around the holidays, interesting. This was not one of the regulars over there.Here it is:25674. Wake up Middletown!!!by midnorth2, 11/19/10 10:16 PM Historically, the MT BOE has ruined this district by their unethical, questionable and disfunctional behavior often fueled by ego driven venom. Most become BOE members with a personal agenda geared toward getting what they want for their friends, family, sport, school or activity. Contrary to what the code of ethics dictates they do not serve all schools and all children, in fact they don't even serve most schools, and most children but they do serve their children, their own interests, neighborhoods, school, friends, sport, activity, etc. Mark my words, the worst is yet to come for our children in terms of quality education, and those who want the best education for their children in safe. secure environments are in for a rude awakening. Our property values will drop as the headlines hit the paper that our school district is in crisis. Those headlines should begin appearing just in time for for the winter holiday. Who would want to invest in a house in MT when our school system is on its way down the crapper because a voting majority of no less than 5 people who know little if anything about running a school district are acting as pupeteers while the instructional leaders have their hands tied and our taxes continue to rise. This great community of 70,000 needs to wake up yesterday. If not they can watch as good, solid and dedicated teachers and adminstrators continue to flee this district one by one and leave the administering of the district to the BOE and the MTEA.Make no mistake, this is what these two preditory groups want and have been lying in wait for. They surround the wagons shooting arrows until all the good cowboys are either dead or leave town. They've been doing it for years. Those of us who have lived here long enough know what I'm referring to.The jury is still out on a couple of BOE members but the verdict is in on the others. One of them has and will continue to single handedly destroy our district while fooling many of you into believing that it is in the name of children, while others will be close behind in a more stealth like but just as caustic approach. I ask that new faces appear and new voices rise up now take a vote of no confidence and demand accountabilty from this BOE in terms of the almost certain collapse of our district by their hands.I challenge the good people of this district to investigate the ongoings of various BOE members and their questionable relationships and affiliations with various individuals, groups and organizations. I guarantee you will find some sobering answers. People are afraid to speak because of a documented history of retribution by the BOE, but they will speak if they know that they have the support of our public who demand honest answers and can be guaranteed whistle blower protection. Lets set the record straight. Despite the caustic enviroment, and the ongoing and ureasonable demands by the Teacher's Association, our superintendent has worked tirelessly 24/7 as the lowest paid large district superintendent in the State, to bring our district out of the dark ages and to a place where our children can learn. Don't let her good work be in vain after she leaves our district. There are young lives in the balance and it is time that the silent majority wises up, learns what is really going on and brings a new voice for our children and to what should be one of the highest performing district in the State.

  6. >Hey Mike, this was posted almost a month ago on NJO. It mentions that Middletown schools would be in the papers because of an impending crisis around the holidays, interesting. This was not one of the regulars over there.Here it is:25674. Wake up Middletown!!!by midnorth2, 11/19/10 10:16 PM Historically, the MT BOE has ruined this district by their unethical, questionable and disfunctional behavior often fueled by ego driven venom. Most become BOE members with a personal agenda geared toward getting what they want for their friends, family, sport, school or activity. Contrary to what the code of ethics dictates they do not serve all schools and all children, in fact they don't even serve most schools, and most children but they do serve their children, their own interests, neighborhoods, school, friends, sport, activity, etc. Mark my words, the worst is yet to come for our children in terms of quality education, and those who want the best education for their children in safe. secure environments are in for a rude awakening. Our property values will drop as the headlines hit the paper that our school district is in crisis. Those headlines should begin appearing just in time for for the winter holiday. Who would want to invest in a house in MT when our school system is on its way down the crapper because a voting majority of no less than 5 people who know little if anything about running a school district are acting as pupeteers while the instructional leaders have their hands tied and our taxes continue to rise. This great community of 70,000 needs to wake up yesterday. If not they can watch as good, solid and dedicated teachers and adminstrators continue to flee this district one by one and leave the administering of the district to the BOE and the MTEA.Make no mistake, this is what these two preditory groups want and have been lying in wait for. They surround the wagons shooting arrows until all the good cowboys are either dead or leave town. They've been doing it for years. Those of us who have lived here long enough know what I'm referring to.The jury is still out on a couple of BOE members but the verdict is in on the others. One of them has and will continue to single handedly destroy our district while fooling many of you into believing that it is in the name of children, while others will be close behind in a more stealth like but just as caustic approach. I ask that new faces appear and new voices rise up now take a vote of no confidence and demand accountabilty from this BOE in terms of the almost certain collapse of our district by their hands.I challenge the good people of this district to investigate the ongoings of various BOE members and their questionable relationships and affiliations with various individuals, groups and organizations. I guarantee you will find some sobering answers. People are afraid to speak because of a documented history of retribution by the BOE, but they will speak if they know that they have the support of our public who demand honest answers and can be guaranteed whistle blower protection. Lets set the record straight. Despite the caustic enviroment, and the ongoing and ureasonable demands by the Teacher's Association, our superintendent has worked tirelessly 24/7 as the lowest paid large district superintendent in the State, to bring our district out of the dark ages and to a place where our children can learn. Don't let her good work be in vain after she leaves our district. There are young lives in the balance and it is time that the silent majority wises up, learns what is really going on and brings a new voice for our children and to what should be one of the highest performing district in the State.

  7. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  8. >Hey Mike, this was posted about a month ago on NJO. It might be related:25674. Wake up Middletown!!!by midnorth2, 11/19/10 10:16 PM Historically, the MT BOE has ruined this district by their unethical, questionable and disfunctional behavior often fueled by ego driven venom. Most become BOE members with a personal agenda geared toward getting what they want for their friends, family, sport, school or activity. Contrary to what the code of ethics dictates they do not serve all schools and all children, in fact they don't even serve most schools, and most children but they do serve their children, their own interests, neighborhoods, school, friends, sport, activity, etc. Mark my words, the worst is yet to come for our children in terms of quality education, and those who want the best education for their children in safe. secure environments are in for a rude awakening. Our property values will drop as the headlines hit the paper that our school district is in crisis. Those headlines should begin appearing just in time for for the winter holiday. Who would want to invest in a house in MT when our school system is on its way down the crapper because a voting majority of no less than 5 people who know little if anything about running a school district are acting as pupeteers while the instructional leaders have their hands tied and our taxes continue to rise. This great community of 70,000 needs to wake up yesterday. If not they can watch as good, solid and dedicated teachers and adminstrators continue to flee this district one by one and leave the administering of the district to the BOE and the MTEA.Make no mistake, this is what these two preditory groups want and have been lying in wait for. They surround the wagons shooting arrows until all the good cowboys are either dead or leave town. They've been doing it for years. Those of us who have lived here long enough know what I'm referring to.The jury is still out on a couple of BOE members but the verdict is in on the others. One of them has and will continue to single handedly destroy our district while fooling many of you into believing that it is in the name of children, while others will be close behind in a more stealth like but just as caustic approach. I ask that new faces appear and new voices rise up now take a vote of no confidence and demand accountabilty from this BOE in terms of the almost certain collapse of our district by their hands.I challenge the good people of this district to investigate the ongoings of various BOE members and their questionable relationships and affiliations with various individuals, groups and organizations. I guarantee you will find some sobering answers. People are afraid to speak because of a documented history of retribution by the BOE, but they will speak if they know that they have the support of our public who demand honest answers and can be guaranteed whistle blower protection. Lets set the record straight. Despite the caustic enviroment, and the ongoing and ureasonable demands by the Teacher's Association, our superintendent has worked tirelessly 24/7 as the lowest paid large district superintendent in the State, to bring our district out of the dark ages and to a place where our children can learn. Don't let her good work be in vain after she leaves our district. There are young lives in the balance and it is time that the silent majority wises up, learns what is really going on and brings a new voice for our children and to what should be one of the highest performing district in the State.

  9. >Hey Mike, it looks like someone else knew about this a month ago, thisis from NJO Middletown forum.25674. Wake up Middletown!!!by midnorth2, 11/19/10 10:16 PM …… Our property values will drop as the headlines hit the paper that our school district is in crisis. Those headlines should begin appearing just in time for for the winter holiday.

  10. >Anon 4:09,Thanks, I remember reading that post after I first posted about karen Bilboa leaving. There was much more behind the rant than just bow members.I think people should start paying attention to the school system, I think we're in for a rude awakening very soon.

  11. >This looks like nothing more than a rumor. Decisions by the Ethics Commission seem to take about a year from the time the complaint is filed, barring some sort of criminal act. If it was a criminal act by a board member it would have made the papers. It just seems too sensational a story to be kept quiet. Most of the decisions by the ethics commission are suspensions because the board member did not attend the required ethics seminar and that only resulted in a suspension. Even being found guilty of nepotism the first time yields a slap on the wrist.Your article said that the complaint was filed earlier this year. I don’t think that a decision would have been made this quickly. More than likely, just like your “scoop” on the super leaving, it contains some truth but how much remains to be seen. I think you were wise to leave out the names and particulars without having the story confirmed, I guess if you are going to engage in spreading rumors you should at the very least be careful. Of course I could be wrong, in which case it’s nice to be anonymous.

  12. >Anon 10:20,There is much more to this story than meets the eye and due to the seriousness of the complaint, if I gave anymore information it would jeopardize the ruling.Just so you know, I have been told who filed the complaint, who the board member is and what the violation was about.Was this case serious enough to have a commissioner recommend the removal of a sitting Board of Ed member? I'm not sure but I was told that it was.Until the decession is released by the State Ethics Commission, I guess we'll just have to wait and see. If the information in this post turns out to be wrong then so be it, I didn't post anyones name so no one's reputation is hurt, mine included.Thanks

  13. >Funny Mike. Seems like you would have to get that amount of information from one of the BOE members themselves. Possibly even the person filing the complaint. Seems pretty unethical to me.

  14. >10:52 Anonymous…Would seem that it took plenty of unethical behavior for there to even be a story and you can be sure of that.Don't point any fingers at Mike.Maybe the meddling of the TC in the recent BOE election has to do with what is or has happened.It is fact their integrity leaves much to be desired !!!Time for the residents of Middletown to realize "they have been hoodwinked " by the current poor excuse for representation in this community.TC members messing with a BOE election was outrageous.Vote for individuals,not along party lines or party influenced, and hold those elected responsible for their conduct.Your children's education is at stake !Didn't this township learn anything back during the "Back to Basic" days?? Smell the coffee…it may already to too late……

  15. >Good point Anon. You would hope that a story about unethical behavior would be done in an ethical way. This is clearly not responsible journalism but merely rumor mongering. Even if the allegations turn out to be accurate it is still just a rumor. The Society of Professional Journalists has its own code of ethics which includes the following: “Test the accuracy of information from all sources and exercise care to avoid inadvertent errors.”By Mike’s own admission this rumor untested and is from a single source. I don’t think adequate care was taken. The problem with any rumor is that it will be accepted as fact by some. On the NJO Middletown forum someone is saying that the NJEA filed an ethics violation against a named member. I don’t know if that poster used this blog as a source or not, but it is possible.If the information was obtained from a board member they are violating the school board code of ethics which states:“ I will hold confidential all matters pertaining to the schools which, if disclosed, would needlessly injure individuals or the schools.” If the rumor turns out to represent the facts accurately Mike will claim that it was justified. But what if it is not accurate? Did Mike considerate the damage it could cause to a board member’s reputation? Did he take care to assure he did not cause harm? Is it a responsible use of this medium to spread possibly harmful rumors? Although Mike did not mention anyone by name, others will use this rumor and deduce who is the most likely board member and the rumor then takes on a life of its own, long outliving any possible retraction by Mike.

  16. >Does this possible removal have anything to do with the funding of a party of some sort. If so this information has been publicly kicked around for a while.

  17. >No anon 9:48This has nothing to do with the funding of any parry

  18. >Mike,Isn't the BOE meeting tonight?Perhaps this situation will be addressed then. Thank you for always trying to keep those of us who do care enlightened about what is going on in this community. If it were not for you and Don Watson….darkness would prevail because that's the way the GOP wants it ! Your blog and Don's "Town Letter" combat the insidious practices of the despotic GOP regime in town.Thank you both for a job well done. It is appreciated….. by so many of us.

  19. >Anon 11:30Thank You, I know we both try very hard.

  20. >I was disappointed to see that you chose not to post my criticism of your spreading the rumor about the boe member being removed. I have contributed to this blog in the past and you have even used my posts as “headlines” for your blog. You have taken my posts from NJO and used them on your blog as well. I will no longer participate in your blog nor will I read it. If you are unable to post an honest and fair criticism, especially when you have every opportunity to respond, I have no use for your blog. If you disagree with my opinion then simply point out the flaw in my position and defend yourself. I had hoped that your position as moderator was one of assuring posts were appropriate, not one of censorship. Interestingly, you did find a way to post a compliment directed at you after my post was deemed unacceptable. I am not going to waste my time contributing to a blog if criticisms are not permitted but compliments are welcome. Good day.

  21. >Anon 2:18Look again your post is there. I deleted a double posting of your comment. If I deleted the wrong comment I am sorry. Resend your comment if you can and I'll repost it

  22. >Mike,!2/15 @2:18 (and many more here) sounds just like the "cheerleader". Wanna place bets ? No one will miss her anyway ??Always…. defending the unethical,often times illegal behavior of those she champions. Not worth arguing with !!!

  23. >Well Mike, what happened? Do you want us to believe that the admitted rumor that you spread was true? Are we to believe that the person that told you about the ethics charges did not tell anyone else? You used your blog to impugn the reputation of the people who volunteer their services. You claimed that although you had only one source that it was a reliable source and you wrote with confidence that the allegation was accurate. You even said that you had specific information that you could not reveal because of the nature of that information.None of the claims that you made have come to fruition. There was no mention of your rumor that a board member had been ordered removed by the State Ethics Commission at the December BOE meeting as you said there would be. There was not a revelation in early January as you said there would be. Surely, if there was any truth to your rumor it would have revealed itself by now. It would need to involve a vast conspiracy to keep something of this magnitude a secret involving too many people who have a history of not being very good at keeping secrets.If someone files frivolous ethics charges against a BOE member they are typically fined $500 for their trouble. What happens to a blogger that taints the reputation of the BOE by spreading an irresponsible rumor in the interest of a spectacular headline?I am not suggesting that you should pay a fine or that you should be sued for libel. I am however suggesting that there is a price to be paid for reckless journalism. That price is a loss of credibility that will taint your “scoops” in the future.So now what? At what point do you apologize for any harm you may have caused? Are you going to print a retraction as any responsible journalist would?

  24. >Anon 10:26Sorry to disappoint but I stand by what I wrote. Sometimes these things take time to come to play out.There is no mass conspiracy involved in any cover-up to keep this quite, typically only the principals that are concerned know about the charges and outcomes before anyone else.I have continued to monitor the situation and the persons that first informed me of this information are upset at how long this is taking.Time will tell as they say.

  25. >Geez Mike, You are in a hole, stop digging.What WAS accurate about your rumor?You said the Ethics Commission ordered the removal of a board member on November 15th and that the board had 30 days to respond. Well, the board took no action on this so that part is not true. The Ethics Commission’s website has a list of their decisions that are as recent as December 26, 2010. There is no decision listed relating to a Middletown BOE member and the same 9 people are on the board.You said that you had a single reliable source for the rumor originally, now you claim that you have “sources”. Which is it?Now you are saying that things are taking longer than expected. Huh? You said that they already took place in November. What am I missing here?Mike, stand back and look at the reality of the situation. Do you really think that the board had 30 days to act on a decision and not only did they not act on it, but they have managed to keep it a secret for months? The only way to keep a secret is not to tell anyone. Are we to believe that 10 people (including the super) know about this and no one told anyone else? Sorry Mike, I think characterizing this as merely a rumor is being kind. There are already too many elements that have proven to be untrue for any of it to be believable.

  26. >A two minute phone call to the State Ethics Commission reveals this: As decisions are rendered they are posted on their website. The decisions are in chronological order. If a decision had been reached in November it would be listed on their website. The last decision listed is from December 2010.It is clear that there was no decision reached in November to remove a board member from the Middletown BOE. Your position that things that are claimed to have already taken place are taking longer than expected to occur is not tenable.Now, did someone file a complaint? Maybe, who knows? Did they not submit the required information? Again, who knows? But one thing that appears abundantly clear is that your rumor is false.

  27. >I called the Ethics Commission. If there had been a decision to remove a board member in November it would be listed on their website. As decisions are rendered they are posted on the website. The decisions are in chronological order and the last one was a few weeks ago. There was no decision to remove a Middletown board member in November or at anytime.Mike, the rumor that you spread is false. This has nothing to do with things taking longer than expected it has to do with things that never occurred that you claim did occur. It’s time for a retraction.

  28. >Nice job Anon,you followed the exact same path as I did to find out information about this. Keep up the good work.BTW, you really need to stop hairsplitting, it exposes your neurotic side.

  29. >You know what Mike? I thought maybe this place was a little different than the other (failed) attempts to have a place for civil conversation about Middletown. Apparently I am mistaken. I thought that perhaps the job of the moderator would be to keep things on topic and not personal. But when the moderator thinks that civil discourse includes calling someone neurotic because they have a different opinion it falls into the same category as the other sites.You checked the website in the middle of December. I checked it today. I called the Ethics Commission and verified that if there had been a decision in November that it would be on the website. I did not do the same thing that you did because if you had done what I did you would see that there was no decision to remove a board member in November or December. That is not hair splitting. That is providing facts to support my opinion about the rumor that you spread about the people who volunteer their services to Middletown.But that’s neither here nor there Mike. I’ve seen enough. As far as I’m concerned this place is little more than a rumor mill run by an insulting moderator who ignores facts when they are presented. Enjoy your blog.

  30. >Such drama from someone who loves to create it!Anon, you'll be back sooner than you wish or think because that is the type of person you are. Chao for now 😦

  31. >Very insightful Mike. First I'm neurotic. Now you know enough about me to predict my behavior. But trust me, I'm gone.

  32. >Oh really Anon,That's what you said in the previous post, see you are neurotic.Until the next time…..

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