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The week ahead
Fort Wayne City Council: 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Citizens Square
EACS board: 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, administration building,
1240 Indiana 930, New Haven
EACS board member Stephen Terry has been at the center of efforts to sponsor the failing Timothy L. Johnson Academy charter school despite also being a member of that school’s leadership staff.

Leadership issues on EACS agenda

The East Allen County Schools board faces some critical decisions at its meeting Tuesday. In addition to beginning a search for a new superintendent, it will hear a sales pitch to oversee a set-to-close charter school.

Ball State University’s Office of Charter Schools notified the Timothy L. Johnson Academy board that its charter would not be renewed for the 2013-14 school year.

EACS board member Stephen Terry, who earns $51,250 a year as “part of the leadership staff” at the charter school, is leading a push for the school district to grant the charter.

The board would make a grave mistake in taking on oversight of the 10-year-old charter school. Resources extended to the Johnson Academy, either in staff time or finances, would come at the expense of EACS students.

Terry has said he will not participate in a vote to sponsor Johnson Academy, but his employment status represents a glaring conflict in any discussion on the topic.

The board will also review the search process for Green’s successor. Board President Neil Reynolds said last week that an interim superintendent will be named at the meeting.

Internal audit

Last November, the Fort Wayne City Council made the shortsighted decision to cut three-quarters of the budget for the city’s internal audit department. Then the council agreed to fund the department for the first three months of 2013 and allow the city administration to come back to argue its case to fully fund the department for the entire year.

The administration plans to present its arguments Tuesday.

Some council members wrongly suggested the department duplicated services provided by the State Board of Accounts, and some suggested the department’s work, in critiquing other city departments, could create ill will.

The debate seemed to overlook the many instances when the department uncovered savings or pointed out procedural lapses that created liability issues or threatened safety.

City officials are proposing several changes to address some of the City Council’s concerns in hopes of restoring the department’s budget so that is can operate through the remainder of the year.

“I don’t think we are going to have any problem getting that department restored,” Councilman Tom Smith, R-1st, said.