The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Cary Brunswick

August 6, 2013

School district's personnel moves make little sense

It is hard to believe, I know, but for the second time in seven years the Oneonta school district will be paying $100,000 or more for an administrator to sit in the bus garage to serve as transportation director.

The school board recently removed Scott Rabeler from his principal job at Greater Plains Elementary School and named him supervisor of transportation and operations, a job ordinarily added to the workload of principals.

Something is wrong here. It is unlikely that the district needs to have a full-time person in that position. And definitely not someone making $125,000 a year.

It is also surprising that taxpayers are not storming the board of education offices, since the board has acted so wastefully after closing an elementary school and eliminating teaching positions because of alleged tight budgets.

What also should have district taxpayers and education advocates upset is that is this the second time Rabeler has been shipped to the bus garage. In 2006, he was transferred there from the high school principal’s chair, after a negative review by then-new school Superintendent Michael Shea.

Apparently, according to sources quoted by this newspaper, Rabeler had some gender issues with his management style and didn’t like doing teacher observations.

At least he was only making $103,000 a year at that time.

And he didn’t like the idea of moving out of the high school, filing an appeal with the state Education Department to overturn the transfer. However, in a decision handed down in 2007, his appeal was dismissed.

Finally, after a three-year stint at the bus garage, Rabeler was moved in 2009 to replace Tim Gracy as principal at Greater Plains. Now, in 2013, another new superintendent, Joseph Yelich, arrives on the scene, and, lo and behold, he also wanted Rabeler out as principal. For some reason, new supervisors apparently just don’t like the guy. But that’s a personnel issue. 

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Cary Brunswick

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