To the editor:

I carefully read Dr. Ginger Studebaker-Bolinger’s response to actions taken during the last MCS Board Meeting as captured in the Jan. 17th Madison Courier. She urged concerned individuals to “try to understand a situation or a conflict deeply, and step back, and not have your emotions drive your (conclusion). Remember there are two sides to every story.” 

She is absolutely right, she provided her side of the story, so now let me provide some facts to offset her fiction.  Dr. Bolinger has tried without success to fire Kevin Yancey for the past four years.  Each year, the board voted to extend Mr. Yancey’s contract by one year without a raise.  Each year, Dr. Bolinger tried to persuade the board that he was unfit to serve as MCHS principal.  So now we’re supposed to believe that she has his best interest, the alumni’s best interest and the community’s best interest in mind with this new position and transfer?  I don’t have a crystal ball, but I’m willing to bet that as soon as the budget gets a little tight, this position will be discontinued and Dr. Bolinger will have succeeded in getting rid of yet another administrator under her authority. 

It is true that Mr. Yancey knew about the new Alumni Relations and Community Outreach Coordinator before the board meeting.  In essence, he was asked to consider this new position and was told that the contract would be for two years with a small pay increase approximately a week before.  Mr. Yancey carefully considered his options and declined the offer saying he preferred to continue as the MCHS principal.  Sadly, that wasn’t an option anymore, Mr. Yancey either needed to accept the new position or his employment with MCS would come to an end.  To compound matters, the proposal made during the last board meeting was for a one year contact and no pay increase.  So you can either accept this new position that was “created especially for you” or you can pack your bags. 

To date, there is only principal remaining since her arrival for the 2012-13 school year.  Dr. Bolinger made the following comment in the Madison Courier on April, 25, 2012, “I’ve always been very interested in evaluation because I think that it’s a way to help individuals grow and strengthen their skills.  And it’s also a way to reward those excellent and outstanding teachers and administrators.” If that is true, then why is there only one principal remaining in the system since her arrival? 

As former MCS board member, I find Dr. Bolinger’s behavior totally unethical. All new positions should be presented to the board as a proposal with a complete job profile and salary before asking them to accept the hiring of an individual.  Was anyone else considered or given the opportunity to apply or interview for this new position?  Board packets are distributed to the board members approximately a week prior to the upcoming meeting.  The personnel section of the last meeting was not included in the board packet in advance, so some board members were caught by surprise.  Of course, some board members knew in advance what was going to be proposed.  The citizens / voters within the Madison School system elected five board members to represent them, all of them are entitled to receive the same information at the same time. Dr. Bolinger is a control freak – reference her new policy in which all communications between school employees and board members have to flow through her office. Dr. Bolinger has slowly purged the system of anyone who doesn’t embrace her ideas and agenda. 

Dr. Bolinger was hired as the MCS superintendent back in the spring of 2012.  She has purchased or leased housing in the Madison, but her family has never formally moved to the area.  In fact, she and her family still own a home in Noblesville. Does someone who only lives in the area part-time while the rest of her family is 125 miles away really have Madison’s best interest in mind?  Dr. Bolinger’s contact expires on June 30, 2018.  Make your voice and thoughts known.  It’s time to stop “outsourcing” this $115K plus position.  Like most school systems, MCS has an active policy against bullying – it’s time to send this bully packing so she can return to her full-time home.  Make sure your board members know that Madison Consolidated Schools deserve better – they need a full-time leader who promotes healthy communications between the board, administrators, educators, parents & children.  Her current contract needs to be her final contract!

Michael Scott

Former MCS board member

Madison