Does the end justify the means? Not always, but in this instance probably.
Harvard School Committee member Keith Cheveralls’ heads-up to the Harvard Hillside about papers he placed at the town clerk’s office to avoid any appearance of a conflict of interest seemed, at first blush, to be just that.
Later, we were informed that the two-page grievance letter included in his folder, signed by Cheveralls’ wife Maryann and the other three members of the fourth-grade Harvard Elementary teaching team, was sent directly to the individual members of the School Committee and to the Devens representative to the committee meetings, Maureen Babcock, who is not a Harvard School Committee member.
To fault Cheveralls with the manner in which the teachers distributed the letter seems to be highly faulty logic.
Was the document release illegal? We’ll see. Harvard School Committee member Stu Sklar opted to file a complaint with the state Ethics Commission hours before even discussing the situation with his colleagues at last Monday’s committee meeting. Let’s let the taxpayer-funded commission ferret it out.
Our layman’s, arm-chair warrior guess is that this is a case, first and foremost, of gavel envy. Ever since the changing of the guard at the helm of the Harvard School Committee, there’s been a tough transition period for Sklar, who has proven with his outburst last Monday night that he does not play well with others.
It’s been brewing for weeks. Via his Twitter alias “StuMan10,” Sklar’s typed online chatter reflects the snarky body language that he conveys during otherwise televised meetings. StuMan10 wrote on May 26, shortly after the committee tapped Cheveralls to lead the board, “Off to school com mtging. Good for a few laughs.”
Definition of “snarky”: adj., see Sklar, Stu.
There’s a lot of Harvard-specific lingo, making more elegant simple problems like the need for a good airing of a problem. As Harvard School Committee Piali De so accurately put it, it’s time for the dysfunctional family to have a little sit-down and sort this stuff out. It’s painful at first, but, properly guided, can either heal wounds or send the errant rascals responsible packing.
As for making the teachers’ concerns about bad morale at Harvard Elementary public, that was a good move. A survey has been reluctantly agreed to. Perhaps HES parents can find out why their own superintendent gives morale at that school a C grade. Is that good enough?