DEVONO AXES WOODBURN
June 24 2010 Woodburn closure Board of Education meeting minutes in quotes below:
BoE Minutes: “She [Susan Eason] questioned the Board about possible future redistricting [in relation to the proposed green school consolidation and closures]… Superintendent Devono replied that redistricting was not on the table…”
By FOIA, we’ve shown that redistricting is so on the table that it is written into the grant proposal.
BoE Minutes: “Katy Ryan questioned the size of the new school with Superintendent Devono stating the school will be built to house 450 students.”
By FOIA, we’ve shown that, weeks earlier, Devono conveyed privately to architect Shriver that the “needs” of the new school are for about 700 students.
BoE Minutes: “She [Katy Ryan] wondered how the Mileground property emerged [as the preferred site for the green school]. Superintendent Devono…stated…that a main consideration for the consolidation is a central location for the two schools.
By FOIA, we’ve shown that Devono’s original preferred location was actually nearly a mile down route 705, which happens to be in North Elementary’s catchment basin. In any case, that spot is the exact distance from Easton school as the old UHS possible green school site, and less than two tenths of a mile closer than the Woodburn schoolgrounds possible green school site.
BoE Minutes: “Mr. [Paul] Adkins…asked the Board to look at the property around [the new Mountaineer Middle School/the old UHS site] owned by WVU…. He questioned why the site was not rated more highly in the site selection process. Superintendent Devono stated they could not get an appraisal and noted the additional costs of knocking down the buildings on the site.”
First, all the sites have particular “additional costs.”
Second, by FOIA we know that months earlier, by February 3rd, Mon Schools had an appraisal for the Mileground site. Why did it not appraise the MM/UHS site?
Third, still earlier, on January 26, WVU did in fact pass along to Mon Schools its appraisals of both the Mileground site and the site Paul Adkins asked about, the land near the new MM/old UHS campus:
“i) Property adjacent to the new Middle School is $175,000.00/acre with acreage dependent upon a survey.
ii) Property behind RE Michaels (approximately 7.83 acres) is $325,000.00/acre for total of 2.5M.”
No appraisal? On the contrary, by FOIA we know that Mon Schools had an appraisal in hand showing the rejected land to be virtually half the price of the chosen Mileground site.
BoE Minutes: “Mr. Haddox questioned expansion on the Mileground site with Superintendent Devono stating none is planned at this time.”
Again, by FOIA we know that the email exchange between architect Shriver and Devono that Devono “needs” the new school to be about 700 students occurred in early June, weeks before the Woodburn closure meeting.
BoE Minutes: “She [Beth Nardella] questioned the criteria the Board used to vote on the location with the Superintendent responding different presentations presented by the architect were used to select a site.”
By FOIA, we learn that WVU Campus Planner Bob Merow states (March 12) of architect Shriver’s school site evaluation questionnaire: “I found the information on the three sites to be grossly inadequate to respond to the 17 factors. The following are a few examples.” Merow then lists and comments on 10 examples of the “grossly inadequate” evaluation. Mon BoE pretends that the architect could and should site the school for them. Board member Clarence Harvey sees fit to explicitly “defer” on site selection at June 8 board meeting to the “expert” architect.
In a forthcoming post, more FOIA and facts on the deceit and manipulation, in addition to the negligence, involved in the Mon BoE efforts to close Woodburn Elementary in its ongoing attempt to site the green school at the 705/119 intersection on the Mileground: How the School Board was Strong-Armed.