A Muscogee County School Board member has threatened to call for the firing of any administration official who prevents the release of the documents he requested concerning three persistent controversies.
Frank Myers, the nine-member board’s District 8 representative, emailed board secretary Karen Jones on Wednesday afternoon a request for:
▪ A copy of the job description, including salary, for the teacher who was reassigned to an undisclosed non-classroom position after she admitted to using the N-word in a Sept. 1 conversation with three fourth-grade girls at Reese Road Leadership Academy while trying to teach them to not use racial slurs. “Also, in your response, please state her salary as a teacher when she was at Reese Road,” Myers wrote.
▪ All material gathered from MCSD’s records request sent to the Columbus Police Department regarding the Roy Newman case. Newman was the MCSD driver who died in a single-vehicle crash after his bus left the roadway Aug. 22, 2016.
The Ledger-Enquirer reported in July that the CPD concluded Newman was speeding and not wearing his seat belt, which was a “large contributing factor in the direct cause of the accident itself.” Contrary to Myers’ allegation, the CPD’s report also says, “There is no indication of any cover up or conspiracy as pertaining to hiding mechanical defects in relation to this accident.”
▪ A complete copy of all video tapes with respect to the Montravious Thomas incident.
Montravious was a 13-year-old MCSD student when contracted behavior specialist Bryant Mosley allegedly body-slammed him “no less than” five times on Sept. 12, 2016, in the alternative education program called AIM (Achievement, Integrity, Maturity) at the Edgewood Student Services Center. Staff failed to get him medical treatment and sent him home on a bus, according to the $25 million lawsuit filed on Montravious’ behalf. His right leg was amputated below the knee Oct. 18.
“Failure to produce this information to the Ledger and other media outlets constitutes a continuing violation of Georgia law,” Myers, a lawyer, wrote in Wednesday’s email to the board secretary. “This must come to an end.”
Myers concluded his email with this warning: “If these requests are not met in full, I intend to make motions Monday night for termination of those responsible for the withholding of this information.”
Thursday afternoon, the Ledger-Enquirer emailed Jones, the MCSD communications office, superintendent David Lewis and MCSD legal counsel Greg Ellington and Melanie Slaton of Hall Booth Smith for their response to Myers’ request. None of them replied before deadline.
The L-E also asked the other eight board members for their reaction to Myers’ request and whether they agree the information should be made public. The only board member who has replied before deadline is John Thomas of District 2.
“I support transparency in the district,” Thomas wrote. “You yourself have expressed frustration in not having the ORA (Open Records Act) request fulfilled. It is public information and the board certainly has a right to the information just like any other member of the public. I feel like it’s more of a slap in the face when a board member can’t get information from the very district we are charged to oversee.”