Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Guest Submission: A Plymouth Citizen Responds to Superintendent Dan Tyree

Superintendent Dan Tyree
The following was submitted by Plymouth citizen extraordinaire, Dare Hawes.  It should also be noted that this blogger is still waiting for Tyree to produce public records and will not be deterred by stall tactics.

Plymouth Superintendent Dan Tyree has repeatedly, unprofessionally and publicly falsely accused Dare Hawes and Diana Vice of ridiculously costing taxpayers money by their justified citizens’ efforts to hold him accountable through Open Access requests/ complaints. (See WTCA 3/24/11 talk show, 4/3/11 Plymouth Truth 6:37 PM comment, 4/22/10 PCS minutes.)  Tyree craftily does this to manipulate the public spot light away from his most questionable actions into a disrespectful public attack on citizens. These facts should be thoroughly examined and acted upon by responsible authority figures to end this exhaustive public dispute.

Dare Hawes was forced to file Public Access complaints ONLY because Tyree absolutely refused to properly and expediently provide critical documents, and then Tyree willfully publicly lied (under the topic of “INTEGRITY” no less-- again see 4/22/10 PCS minutes) about the results of those complaints (See Pilot News 5/1/10—attached). If Tyree had willfully provided these documents in a responsible, good faith manner, no complaints would have ever needed to have been filed. Therefore, there would have been no cost to taxpayers, and no dispute.

As a public school superintendent making over $100,000.00 per year, Tyree directs a personal staff of numerous secretaries and assistants to assist him in providing these documents to the public. If Tyree has committed no wrong, there is no need for Tyree to publicly pay Plymouth attorneys Joe Morris and Ed Ruiz, as well as Indianapolis attorney Thomas E. Wheeler II, to irrationally prohibit the release of these public documents-- or to conduct a SECRET $13,000 defamatory investigation of a private citizen by our government! 

If Tyree had initially provided these critical documents as requested by at least 13 citizens, these documents would have immediately proven who committed the alleged criminal act of computer tampering on at least October 4, 2007. If Tyree had provided these critical tell-all documents, this 3.5 year public battle never would have transpired.

Question: why do Tyree and his school board adamantly refuse to provide these tell-all documents? His refusal makes it glaringly obvious he and his board have something sinister to hide. Why else would they refuse to cooperate, and prove their innocence once and for all? And willfully lie to the media about others not cooperating?  And continually, most unprofessionally, attack Hawes and now Vice publicly? It is the actions of Tyree and his board that has caused at the very least $25,000 in public legal fees to protect them, NOT our school community. These colossal PUBLIC legal fees were authorized by Tyree and his board alone. Mrs. Hawes and Mrs. Vice NEVER did not authorize any public monies being spent in this on-going debacle, nor has either filed any law suit against Tyree or the Plymouth Community Schools. As respected citizens, they have exhaustedly volunteered hours for the public welfare, not their own. Hawes and Vice are attacked again and again by ill informed public leaders because they dare to exercise their rights and freedom as citizens to confront obvious corruption in the public arena.

What is the genuine cost of the Truth? What is the cost of citizens exercising their freedom to
properly and justifiably question their suspect elected officials? What has this cover up of
Plymouth Superintendent Dan Tyree’s and his school board’s public wrongs truly cost our
educational community?
         Freedom is never free. Corruption always costs.         
                                                                                       554 Words --Dare Hawes, 574-936-6853                                                                                           719 S. Michigan St., Plymouth, IN.
Pilot News Letter to Editor 5/1/1—quoted from PCS Board Minutes  4/22/10

Dan Tyree stated (under the topic of Integrity) that, “For the third time Dare Hawes filed an Open Access Violation against me and my staff. And for the third time we prevailed. “

Superintendent Tyree’s words are again not true.

Two questions: Why were these complaints filed? What were the honest written opinions of the Indiana Public Access Counselor?

Complaint #1:
    13 citizens requested the complete computer record under dispute to resolve the grave conflict of who are lying—administrators or teachers. They were denied 13 times, even though the PCS attorney Thomas E. Wheeler II stated our superintendent was obligated under the Access to Public Records Act to provide these records to the media/ public. Then he stated the records do not exist. Then he stated they were ghosted and could not be accessed. (He is publicly paid $220 per hour.)
    Citizens appealed to the IPA Counselor. His opinion was that since PCS says the records do not exist—PCS did not violate APRA. 
    Fact: the tell-all records do exist—but these administrators and board hide them. Why?

Complaint #2:
    Citizens filed this complaint based on evidence that PCS board violated the Open Door Law. The IPA counselor’s opinion: “I express no opinion regarding the factual matters upon which you and the school board disagree.”
    Fact:  “No opinion” is not a prevailing opinion.

Complaint #3:
    Three times citizens requested copies of the original invoices of PCS attorneys’ legal fees under APRA. Three times Tyree refused such—forcing a complaint to be filed.
Only then Tyree sent incomplete invoices—NOT what was requested. The IPA Counselor’s opinion: “PCSC has assured me that it has produced all responsive billing statements in accordance with your request.  I trust this resolves your complaint.”  He also opined that “PCS has not yet sustained its burden of proof to demonstrate that the time it took to produce Mr. Wheeler’s invoices was reasonable.”
    Fact: This is not a prevailing opinion. 
Tyree stated that “Our money should be spent on our children, not on our lawyers.”  
   Fact: if Tyree and his board had ever once properly cooperated, no complaint would have
            ever needed filing. They forced the complaints.
   Fact: Tyree did not have to retain any attorney to answer any of these citizens’ appeals. It
            was his choice.
Fact: Citizens agree that money should not be spent on lawyers—and have consistently been appalled that Tyree and his board have spent over $25,000 just in legal fees to protect themselves, not our educational community.

Tyree said the IPA complaints were against "me and my staff." Again not true. Justified complaints have been against Tyree, Hill and this school board---never against any of the dedicated, conscientious, professional Plymouth staff members--including building administrators, teachers, secretaries, aides, and custodians.       
P.S 4/12/11 Inexperienced IPA Counselor Kossack’s opinions suspiciously parrot the preeminent Wheeler’s opinions. When the facts are correctly comprehended, Kossack’s opinions are illogical. Do note Kossack was suddenly appointed by Governor Daniels to this task only after the respected/experienced IPA Counselor Heather Neal had to recuse herself due to a conflict of interest when the IDOE conveniently and suddenly offered her a job right after this IPA  complaint was filed against both  the IDOE and  Plymouth administrators. Also note close political connections between Governor Daniels, Thomas E. Wheeler II and IDOE Chief Tony Bennett exist.                                       

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