Wednesday, August 17, 2011

MCPS Misleads Board of Ed and Public in Site Selection report

The Parents' Coalition has obtained an April 20, 2011 e-mail (see image below) from the Montgomery County Department of Recreation to Montgomery County Public Schools' Director of Long Range Planning that contradicts the composition of the BCC Site Selection Advisory Committee (SSAC) as described in the report that now appears on the MCPS website.

The e-mail is from the Chief of the Division of Facilities and Capital Programs for the Montgomery County Department of Recreation, Jeffrey Bourne. 

In the e-mail Mr. Bourne tells MCPS to remove his name and the name of his Department from the list of site selection committee participants. 

Did MCPS comply with his request?

The April 20, 2011 e-mail from Mr. Bourne was explicit about what was to be removed from BOTH the text and Exhibit B of the March 8, 2011 report (link goes to original March 8th report). The report was apparently changed AFTER March 8, 2011 to remove Mr. Bourne's name from Exhibit B's list of names of members of the site selection advisory committee, but the report was NOT changed to remove a reference to the Department of Recreation from the list of participating agencies in the text of the report (Page 1). 

The fact that a MCPS report with a date of March 8th was revised after March 8th without indicating the date of the revision (e.g. by an errata sheet) raises questions in itself. 

The fact that the explicitly requested revision wasn't made to the text of the report when a revision was made to Exhibit B raises even more questions.

Relevant excerpts from report and e-mail:

Page 2 of the report dated March 8, 2011 states:
"The SSAC for Bethesda-Chevy Chase Middle School #2 met on December 14, 2010 and on January 25, 2011."
The April 20, 2011 email from Jeffrey Bourne states:
"For the record, neither I nor the Department of Recreation were a member of any Site Selection Committee for any MCPS project nor did we participate in any evaluation of any sites related to BCC MS #2. ...Prior to publication of this report (or in case of publication) remove any reference to the Department of Recreation or my participation in any Site Selection Committee activities other than to indicate that I was present at the announcement meeting in January, 2011."
The April 20, 2011 email from Mr. Bourne notes that:
"...the text of the report indicates that the Department of Recreation was a participating agency in the site selection process. ...In Exhibit B it lists my name as a member of this same committee." 
Page 1 of the report dated March 8, 2011 currently posted on the MCPS website (August 16, 2011) states:
"The SSAC was comprised of staff from the Montgomery County Office of Management and Budget, the Montgomery County Department of Transportation, the Montgomery County Department of General Services, the Montgomery County Department of Recreation..."
However, Exhibit B of the report dated March 8, 2011 currently posted on the MCPS website does not list Mr. Bourne's name as a member of the Site Selection Advisory Committee.

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