"A basic tenet of a healthy democracy is open dialogue and transparency"


JUNE 18, 2011

New Loudon County School Director Jason Vance promised transparency but you have to wonder what he really meant. Just ask the parents of former North Middle School Principal Tim Berry. It appears that Tim Berry's contract will not be renewed and he has been reassigned as a high school teacher at Loudon High School. Parents are upset and have purportedly met with Director Vance to share their concerns.

And before that, parents learned how former Greenback School Principal Joey Breedlove abruptly resigned his position to be reassigned as a teacher position at Ft. Loudon Middle School. 

Has Director Vance taken on more than he can chew?      

While Director Vance may tote transparency purportedly keeping the School Board apprised of personnel changes weekly, parents and public haven't faired as well.

The Monroe County Advocate, sister paper of the News Herald, just reported that Mike Garren has accepted the position of Loudon County Assistant Director, another big surprise!

Director Vance worked in the Monroe County school system, and he currently resides in Monroe County. 

According to the Monroe County Advocate article "..."Garren first learned about the job after Jason Vance was named the new London County director of schools, leaving the assistant director position vacant. When the job listing was posted, Garren took a chance and applied. He interviewed with them the last week of May and was notified he had the job a few days later..." According to the article, Garren will report to Loudon County BOE Central Office on July 1. CLICK RELATED ARTICLE  Garren leaves Monroe County school system, heads for Loudon

At a recent  Loudon County Board of Education workshop meeting held on June 2nd, I don't recall hearing Director Vance publicly inform the Board and community residents that he had interviewed and hired a new assistant school director, to be announced later.

Perhaps, keeping the school Board updated is his only concern, after all the Board voted unanimously to hire him. But its the taxpayers who foot the bills, and its the voters who elect school board members.

Director Vance led the public to believe that transparency would be key to his administration but many are wondering if his recent actions speak louder than words.. MUM is the word.