Saturday, November 19, 2011

How Board non-resignation ended

This is how the issue of my non-resignation by email dated Friday, August 26, 2011 came to an end on Wednesday, August 31, 2011.

I was informed by the Dallas ISD General Counsel on Friday, August 26, 2011 that my email resignation was not valid under Board Policy BBC-Legal and that I would need to submit the resignation in the proper format before any official Board action to accept a resignation could be taken.

The decision was mine alone - to resign or not.  If I decided to resign, it must be done in the proper format.

I also spoke with the Board President by phone on Saturday, August 27, 2011, and he clearly knew that under Board policy there had been no resignation.

Over the weekend many requests from District 6 residents and other concerned citizens were received asking me to continue as District 6 Trustee.  I listened to their feedback and was humbled by the statements of support. 

These requests were the primary reason I reconsidered and decided not to resign. Also, new information was reported in the Dallas Morning News on the possible doubling of the expense of an election because of a missed deadline. 

Even though I had not officially resigned and that was clearly understood and had been discussed with both the General Counsel and the Board President, on Monday, August 29, 2011 a Called Board meeting was scheduled for Thursday, September 1, 2011 a 6:00 P.M. "to Take Possible Action to Accept the Resignation of Board Trustee, Carla Ranger, District 6."

On Tuesday (8-30-11) I asked my Board Assistant to inform the Board of Trustees that I would not be sending an official resignation.  I assumed that should end the matter but it did not.  There was more.

The next day (Wednesday, August 31, 2011)  I received the email below from the Board President Lew Blackburn  and I responded to his demand that "you personally send a written statement of your intention to retract your resignation." 

My board assistant, at my request, had already informed the Board of my intention not to resign on Tuesday. 

There is no requirement to personally retract a resignation that the General Counsel and Board President had already confirmed did not meet the requirements of Board policy and was not a valid resignation.

It was reported in the Dallas Morning News on Tuesday, August 30, 2011:
"Though Blackburn still had not received the document by Tuesday, trustees called a meeting for Thursday to accept Ranger’s resignation. Blackburn had said if he had not received a written resignation from Ranger by then, the board would ask its legal staff if Ranger’s e-mailed resignation could suffice as notification." DMN Click Here
Trustee Blackburn already knew the answer to this question and so did I.  He had confirmed to me personally on Saturday that the email resignation could not suffice as notification. There was nothing to ask. The General Counsel had already answered that question.
I saw where this was going and decided to respond.

Email from Lew Blackburn to Carla Ranger
Wednesday, 8-31-2011 - 12:14 P.M.

Trustee Carla Ranger,

On Friday, August 26, 2011, at 3:58 p.m., you sent an email message to several Dallas ISD employees (Deno Harris, Executive Director, Board Services, Alan King, Interim Superintendent of Schools, Jack Elrod, General Counsel, and Delisa Proctor, Board Assistant).

The email message indicated, "Via this email, I am today submitting my resignation as District 6 Trustee effective on the earliest date of Board acceptance. It is my hope that the Board will appoint a replacement until the next regularly scheduled election date. Immediate acceptance and appointment of a new Trustee prior to the September Board briefing would be appreciated."

The same message was posted on your website at at 3:59 p.m.

On Saturday night, August 27, 2011, at approximately 10:45 p.m. when you returned my call, you indicated that you understood the policy requirements of Policy BBC-Legal; "A Board member may resign by delivering written notice, signed by the Board member, to the presiding officer of the Board. Election Code 201.001.

On yesterday, August 30, 2011, trustees received an email message from Delisa Proctor indicating, "Trustee Ranger has asked me to inform the Board of Trustees that she will not be resigning as District 6 Trustee."  I also received notifications from several media persons, and television and radio newscasts that you had retracted your resignation.

Carla, you did not personally inform the Board of Trustees of your intention to resign your position last Friday.  Still, you have not personally informed the Board of Trustees of your intentions to retract your resignation yesterday.

So that we are very clear about your intentions, please communicate with me as President of the Board of Trustees.  I am asking that you personally send a written statement of your intention to retract your resignation.

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

With Regards for Children,

Lew Blackburn, Ph.D.
President, Board of Trustees


Email reply from Carla Ranger to Lew Blackburn
Wednesday, 8-31-2011 - 3:35 P.M.

Good afternoon.

I certainly did request Board Assistant, Delisa Proctor, to inform
the Board that I would not be submitting an official resignation.

Please indicate the section of the Board policy that requires any specific
retraction of a resignation that was not valid in the first place.

I see no such requirement in the Board policy.

It appears you are violating the Board policy in making such a demand that is no
where stated in the policy of the District.

The status appears to be there was no valid resignation.  Therefore, an official
resignation was not and is not before the Board.  If this is correct, there is nothing to retract.

Also, I am not aware of anything in Board policy that would authorize the setting
of a Board meeting prior to receiving a resignation that meets the requirement of Board policy.

The General Counsel previously informed me that the resignation email I sent was
not a valid resignation under Board policy.

It would be helpful to receive the General Counsel's clarification.  I am
requesting that clarification from the General Counsel. I will certainly follow
whatever the General Counsel indicates is required by Board policy BBC (Legal).

Thank you for your assistance.

For the Children,

Carla Ranger

This ended the matter.