by Diane Payne and Lisa Haver
The Board of Education held two meetings on the afternoon of October 7: one to consider a bond issuance of approximately $400 million and the other to allow members of the public to address their concerns about the District.
The Board followed the letter of the law by posting a small notice about this special meeting in the classified section of the Philadelphia Inquirer. They also entered the time of the meeting, with no details, in their online calendar. The Board held this meeting at 1 PM, knowing that most stakeholders could not attend, with teachers and students in school and most parents at work. When the Board finally posted the Action Item, just days before the meeting, it gave nothing but the title–not even the amount. The legal notice had more information than the agenda posted online and in the copy distributed at the meeting. The Board clearly wanted to vote on this $375 bond issue after a minimum of public disclosure.