June 19, 2019
With a five-minute special session, the board of education has changed course on equity training for the Lee’s Summit R-7 School District.
After months of contentious meetings following the board’s passing of an equity plan in February of this year, board members voted 6–1 to approve a one-year contract with Educational Equity Consultants (EEC) to provide equity training for administrators, teachers and staff. The training will cost $97,000.
Board Member Mike Allen, who previously voted against the contract, made the motion to approve. He said that the board had great conversations throughout their two-day institute, which took place Friday, June 14, and Monday, June 17.
During Monday’s session, the board had the opportunity to ask questions of the three staff who participated on the 11-person RFP (request for proposal) committee that reviewed equity training responses. Allen sought the option to cancel the contract if the board is not happy with its outcomes. While the approved contract does not include such a provision explicitly, the board will have the option of choosing whether to renew for additional years of training.
Board Member Kim Fritchie, who also previously voted against the proposal, echoed Allen’s comments.
“I’m glad we had the opportunity to discuss the proposal at the work session on Monday,” Fritchie said. She added that she appreciated hearing from the RFP committee members, seeing elements of the curricula and learning more about the evaluation process.
“I’m very comfortable in voting in support of the proposal now,” said Fritchie.
Board Member Judy Hedrick was the only vote against the proposal. She did not make any comments during the June 19 special session and did not stay to talk to media after the meeting.
The only item on Wednesday’s agenda was the EEC contract.