HARVEY | A Dolton village trustee on Wednesday questioned the way in which the Thornton Township High School District 205 board is refusing to address certain personnel moves for the district.
Cathern Bendell said the moves — which were on the agenda for approval during the Wednesday board meeting but were withdrawn at the request of School Board member Toni Williams — create the potential for work not getting done or people doing work without any guarantee that they will be paid.
“How do you have a staff if this hasn’t been addressed?” Bendell asked the School Board during its public participation portion of the board meeting. “I’m confused about this.”
She also said at one point, “I don’t understand how things work if you don’t know who is teaching our children.” And she later added, “I hope this problem is resolved before the next board meeting.” That meeting is scheduled for Feb. 13 at Thornton High School.
For his part, district Superintendent John F. Thomas said the district is managing to operate with its existing staff.
Anthony Bass, the high school district’s attorney, told Bendell, “I agree with you. These moves should be approved.”
He made that comment after board Vice President Edward Drayton tried to get Williams to explain the situation to Bendell, only to have Williams defer to Bass.
Drayton presided over the board meeting in the absence of board President Kenneth Williams, who is Toni Williams’ husband.
Later, Williams said the reason she asked for measures involving employment dating back to July 11 and leaves of absence and minutes from the high school board’s meeting of Dec. 12, 2012, to be withdrawn from the agenda was that she wanted more information, although she did not specify what information she wanted.
“I don’t have clarity on the employment” situation, Williams said, adding later, “there are still some names on the list of people seeking employment, and I’m not sure why they’re still there.”
In the end, the board voted 4-1 in favor of the reduced consent agenda — which wound up consisting only of approving payroll for December, along with accepting a resignation of an employee who is voluntarily leaving the district.
Drayton was the lone vote in opposition of the consent agenda.
In other business, the high school board voted 3-2 in favor of a measure giving the superintendent and the coordinator of business services authority to sign checks issued on the district’s accounts with MB Financial Bank.
The latter person was given the authority for now because the district technically does not have a business manager, the position that usually would have authority to sign checks.
Thomas said if the board did not vote to approve the signatures, the bank theoretically could refuse to honor the district’s checks.