Someone needs to stand up and to be heard before a vote is taken on who the next superintendent of schools is going to be.
School Committee Chair Thomas Abruzzese has all but disqualified himself with his recent rant and rave to the other 14 members of the search committee, a stern, angry warning to all those who don’t think like him to begin doing as he says or to resign.
At Wednesday evening’s meeting of the superintendent choice committee, four finalists we know of will be introduced to the public at the end of the committee’s executive session by Abruzzese. There will be apparently one fellow from Holyoke, a receiver, two applicants from Chelsea’s public schools, who were passed over for the Chelsea position, and a third fellow from Cambridge.
Abruzzese has hijacked the proceedings with his handpicked committee, which includes among others, his daughter-in-law.
Abruzzese’s first action as chair of the choice committee was to omit the possibility of so-called insiders like Assistant Superintendent Charlie Obremski, acting Superintendent Janice Gauthier and Assistant High School Principal Omar Easy to get an interview.
We believe, and many others who wish to remain silent for fear of retribution by the likes of Abruzzese and the mayor, that the three local candidates are all eminently qualified, supremely qualified, in fact, to serve as the superintendent of the Everett Public Schools.
At the very least, they should be publicly introduced, announced as candidates and finalists and be interviewed for all to weigh and to measure.
At the very least, this needs to be accomplished to give a semblance of what is fair and just about a choice process hijacked by Abruzzese. What is guiding Abruzzese’s zealous discrimination and exclusion of Obremski, Gauthier and Easy?
It is gender discrimination? Is it racial discrimination? Is it about his desire to exclude a local resident from the process?
What is there to fear in an open and honest process that is untainted by discrimination and exclusion?
More than anyone, the mayor should know the value of having a local qualified administrator taking over the Schools superintendency. He should be demanding that the three who applied should at the very least receive an interview.
What does an interview cost? Is there a charge for an interview? Is one of the chief requirements that those interviewed have nothing to do with Everett?
Yes there is.
On its face such an edict determining process is as unheard of as it would be to disallow women, blacks, Jews or Hispanics only not to apply.
Why would Abruzzese be so bothered by local administrators who are thoroughly qualified being interviewed unless he had an alterior motive? Does he want more Abruzzese family members to be hired by the new superintendent he is appointing? Is that it?
The three to five qualified folks being announced as finalists Wednesday evening by the choice committee are all false finalists without any standing here unless Obremski, Gauthier and Easy are interviewed as well.
We urge the members of the choice committee to denounce Abruzzese for his poor behavior and to require the choice process to start anew, and to this time interview as well the three local administrators who applied as part of that new beginning.
It would be fair. It would be right.
Exclusion and discrimination as ordered up by Abruzzese is inappropriate, and quite frankly, it is wrong.
Even worse is the absolute silence and deafening quiet of all those too afraid to speak up after Abruzzese’s incoherent outburst ordering all those who are not with him to resign.
That says more about the illegitimacy of this process than the four or five finalists Abruzzese was set to unveil Wednesday evening.