Citizens Demand Resignation of Prairie Grove School Board President

Here’s what just popped into my email:

CALL FOR ACTION

Margaret Ponga

Margaret Ponga

This letter is to inform ALL residents, taxpayers, and parents of Prairie Grove, District 46 of the goings on within our school district.

What was once looked at as an outstanding school district is sadly spiraling into something quite different.

These changes are coming from the Board Of Education (BOE) and spiraling down within our school.

The following is ALL verifiable from the school district through Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). We encourage you to take a moment to read the below information, request your own FOIA information and go to the BOE meetings.

Did You Know

1.That the school district lunchroom was open to all parents to visit (on a trial basis) even though ALL administrators, teachers, local authorities and community members spoke out opposing this decision. In addition, after CT the previous BOE supported the decision of the administration to close down lunch in an effort to secure the safety of ALL children. This “trial event” also interrupted the Physical Education instruction to MANY children. The only person actively supporting this decision was the BOE president, Ms. Ponga. (FOIA Teacher Survey Regarding Open Lunch)

2. That the BOE voted to award retiring teachers $ 15,000. Retirement incentives were removed from the last PG teacher’s union contract by the previous board. This is to be reviewed on an annual basis. According to the McHenry County Blog “a proposal like this is so wrong because info like this should be coming FROM the district finance expert”. [This sounds like something that County School Supt. Leslie Schimerhorn told the Board.] The district financial specialist recommended $5000-$12,000. However, Ms. Ponga, proposed a retirement incentive of $40,000 plus payment for unused sick days. Who benefited from this? Those who distributed campaign literature on behalf of the teachers union.

3. That we have lost 4 out of 7 school administrators. This is alarming and unprecedented. Among those lost administrators is Lynette Zimmer, Superintendent. The reason for her leaving is “A

Prairie Grove School Superintendent Lynette Zimmer

Prairie Grove School Superintendent Lynette Zimmer

SUPERINTENDENT MUST BE CONFIDENT THAT HE OR SHE HAS THE AUTHORITY TO MAKE DAILY DECSIONS TO OPERATE THE DISTRICT EFFECTIVELY. BECAUSE OF PRAIRIE GROVE’S NEW BOARD PRESIDENT, I NO LONGER HAVE THAT CONFIDENCE” Dr Zimmer goes onto say, “SINCE TAKING OFFICE, MRS. PONGA HAS CREATED TURMOIL AND CONTROVERSY IN WHAT WAS ONCE AN AWARD-WINNING DISTRICT. MRS. PONGA HAS LITTLE RESPECT OR TRUST FOR THE POSITION OF SUPERINTENDENT AND NONE FOR ME IN PARTICULAR”. She continues, “IT IS A SAD DAY INDEED WHEN A SUPERINTENDENT FEELS COMPELLED TO GET AN ATTORNEY TO REQUEST THE BOARD PRESIDENT CEASE AND DESIST HER SLANDEROUS, DEFAMATORY AND DAMAGING BEHAVIOR”. (FOIA Letter from Dr Zimmer to BOE on Dec. 16,2013)

4. That at almost all meetings since the seating of the new board, that legal counsel has been present costing the taxpayers $250 per hour (on the average $1700

5. That against the advice of Regional Office of Education Superintendent, Legal Counsel and the Superintendent, that Ms. Ponga self-appointed herself as the chair of the Finance committee even though a qualified person was interested.

We were once the well respected school district and now we have turn to the laughing stock of McHenry County and the state, which will make it more difficult to find a good superintendent, affect our children’s education, our home values and

1. Attend the board meetings rotate in your neighborhood sending a resident to the meeting. The meetings on are on the 2nd JRHS Library. Next meeting is MARCH 11th.

2. Call the Board President – Margaret Ponga and express your concern [email protected] 815-477-3877

3. Call the newly elected board members who ran with Ms. Ponga. Tell them how

  • Are you okay with this type of behavior?
  • Whose interest are you here to represent?
  • Were they aware of the actions the Board President has taken?
  • Do you support this, and what are you going to do to make it better?
  • Laura Barker 847-639-3415 [email protected]
  • Rick Salvo 847-516-1641 [email protected]
  • John Bowman 847-639-3890 [email protected]

4. Attend a Town Hall Meeting on March 18th at 7pm in the PGJH Library.

5. Visit https://sites.google.com/site/citizensforpg46/ to verify the above and get more information.

6. Demand the resignation of BOE President, Margaret Ponga.


Comments

Citizens Demand Resignation of Prairie Grove School Board President — 20 Comments

  1. Let’s shut it down and give the kids private school vouchers.

  2. And this is what happens when “The Party” doesn’t get involved in non-partisan races.

    This is what happens when “The Party” is run by a bunch of closet Democrat, Union Sympathizers.

    This is what happens when “The Party” is run by a bunch of people who are only concerned about themselves and their station.

    This is what you get.

  3. It is illegal for “The Party” to get involved in non-partisan elections.

    “The Citizens” are responsible for who they elect to their school board. Not “The Party”.

    “The Party” can only concern itsrlf with partisan elections, nor nonpartisan elections. By Illinois Law.

    This is what you get when “The People” do not understand the system that they criticize.

    Get involved.

    Run for your school board.

    As much as you and others want, everything is not the fault of “The Party”.

    But that doesn’t fit the Regime’s narrative.

  4. “Teacher 155″ = Marge Nygren

    Let me guess you plan on pointing fingers at Bill Prim…

    When in fact Bill Prim is not connected to the Regime.

    Even though you would like everyone to think he is..

    You should know all about the Regimes narrative,, because you are part of it..

    And, you are a Zinke follower.

    Instead, of making false claims on this blog, you should be helping Andy Zinke dig himself out of his bit fat hole.

    WHERE IS ANDY ZINKES DIPLOMA FROM JUDSON CHRISTIAN UNIVERSITY?

    DOES IT EXIST?

    SO FAR, HE HAS PRODUCED NO EVIDENCE OF EVER HAVING GRADUATED…

    PROVE IT!

  5. “Duncan McHenry” = Donna. Let me guess you plan on pointing fingers at Andrew Zinke….

    When in fact Andrew Zinke is not connected to the Regime.

    Even though you would like everyone to know he is.

    You should know all about the Regime’s narrative.

    because you are part of it.

    And, you are a Prim follower. I

    nstead, of making false claims on this blog, you should be helping Bill Prim dig himself out of his big fat hole.

    WHERE IS BILL PRIM’S PROOF THAT ANDY ZINKE’S DIPLOMA FROM JUDSON CHRISTIAN UNIVERSITY DOES NOT EXIST?

    SO FAR, BILL PRIM HAS PRODUCED NO EVIDENCE THAT ANDY ZINKE DID NOT GRADUATE…..

    PROVE IT!

  6. “Duncan McHenry″ = Donna… Hey Donna, your bowel of popcorn with lots of butter is waiting for you……

  7. Public school Superintendents hardly ever resign mid year.

    It makes no sense to give retiring teachers an extra dime.

    If teachers and administrators feel they need more money, they can continue working another year.

    Who needs that money more, a teacher who if the took their college classes to achieve their lane movements consistently throughout their career is earning around $100,000 after 35 years of service (could be 33 years worked if they exchange 2 years of unused sick leave).

    Well teachers in elementary districts, especially smaller elementary districts such as Prairie Grove, typically make less than teachers in unit districts or high school districts in the same geographic, demographic, and socio-economic area.

    But they still do very well especially considering the State of Illinois Contribution to their pension fund which is around 20% of their salary.

    That’s evident by low teacher turnover.

    How about instead of giving extra money to retiring teachers, the money is used on improving the educational outcome of a student?

    Maybe some kid who needs extra help with reading or math while their parents work and the retired teacher spends time with the retired teachers’ grandkids (while the parents work to pay taxes for the retired teachers early retirement).

    Teachers and administrators in Illinois already receive one of the best pensions on planet earth, thanks to benefit hiking legislation passed by legislators and signed by Governors from 1971 to current, and thanks to generous salary hikes by local school boards.

    By thy way pension benefit hiking legislation was signed by Governors (both Democrat and Republican) IN THE VERY SAME YEARS THE GOVERNOR WAS SHORTING THE STATE (ON BEHALF OF THE EMPLOYER WHICH IS THE SCHOOL DISTRICT) CONTRIBUTION TO THE TEACHER RETIREMENT SYSTEM OF ILLINOIS (TRS) PENSION PLAN.

    How incredibly dysfunctional is that.

    The State could not afford to make the full pension payment, so the State passed legislation which made the payment larger.

    Which of course compounded the problem.

    And furthermore teacher union lobbyists where in cahoots with politicians to hike pension benefits, because the pensions could not be diminished or impaired per the sentence added to the Illinois State Constitution in 1970.

    Pension benefits could and were hiked.

    But could not be diminished or impaired.

    Pension benefits could go up.

    But pension benefits could not come back down.

    Only up, up, and away.

    No limit to high pension benefits could go.

    No ceiling.

    No cap.

    And no matter how high they went, the Illinois State Constitution said pension benefits could not come back down.

    Public school teachers and administrators in Illinois are eligible for full retirement with fewer years worked at an earlier age than the general public, especially the public employed in the private sector.

    The best solution?

    School choice.

    No logical reason we can’t have school choice.

    Let the teacher union, administration, and board compete for a change.

    Real competition.

    If a parent doesn’t like the results, the parent should be able to enroll their child at the school of the parents choice the following year, AT NO ADDITIONAL COST TO THE PARENT.

    THE MONEY SHOULD FOLLOW THE CHILD, NOT BE TRAPPED IN THE LOCAL SCHOOL DISTRICT.

    The school district: Prairie Grove CSD 46.

    The teacher union: Prairie Grove Teachers’ Association, IEA-NEA

    IEA-NEA = Illinois Education Association – National Education Association.

    IEA = the statwide teacher union.

    NEA = the national teacher union.

    The school district, teacher union, and administration are part of a government monopoly.

    And too often the money gets spent as if it’s Monopoly money.

    With the above article being Exhibit A.

    Well it’s March and that means standardized tests in the public schools.

    The elementary and middle school kids should be taking their ISAT’s this week or soon.

    Illinois Standard Achievement Test.

    This is the last year of the ISAT.

    This year the ISAT is 100% based on Common Core.

    Last year the ISAT was based on 20% Common Core.

    The replacement for ISAT next year is called PARCC in which Illinois is one of several states in the PARCC consortium.
    PARCC is 100% based on Common Care.

    Last year Ms. Ponga said she was running for office with 3 other vested community members: Laura Barker, John Bowman, and Rick Salvo.

    http://elections.nwherald.com/candidate/882/Margaret-Ponga

    All four are now on the school board.

  8. “Teacher 155″ You are paranoid….. Duncan is not Donna….

    Hey, Marge,

    remember when you came to my house for Republican get togethers?

    Gosh, I wonder why the FBI was asking me questions about you?

    Where is Zinke’s diploma?….

  9. Pingback: Champion News | Citizens Demand Resignation of Prairie Grove School Board President

  10. It is not illegal.

    The Republican Party of Illinois is just broken. H

    opefully things will change when Geri, Mike, and Co. are gone.

  11. “Teacher 155″ You are paranoid…..

    Teacher 155 is not Marge….

    Hey, Donna, remember when you came to Bill’s house for “Republican” get togethers?

    Gosh, I wonder why the FBI was asking me questions about you?

    Where is your proof that Zinke does not have a diploma?….

  12. Mr. Rogers. When is the last time that you voted for a Republican candidate or Democratic candidate for school board?

    You will not see the words Republican or Democrat behind any school board candidate’s name.

    Same holds true for municipal offices such as mayor and city council.

    Municipal and school board candidates cannot legally identify themselves as Republican or Democrat.

    Nor may the Republican or Democratic parties endorse or support a candidate.

    Partisan party involvement in non-partisan politics is illegal.

    Read the Election Law.

  13. “Teacher 155″ Judson Christian College confirmed that Andy Zinke does not have a diploma, twisted Marge. That is my proof.

    What you are doing by repeating my words is childish.

    School age children act like you, when they can’t find the words to justify their actions.

    Depositions in Rockford, hope your ready Marge..

    The FBI never talked to you about me, because I wasn’t watching those famous TV shows “Let’s Make a Deal” and “The Price is Right”

    You just might have to give up all of those homes….

    Hope so….

    Gosh, I always wanted a home in Florida and a lake home in Wisconsin.

  14. Markmcguire and Mark: Amen.

    Vouchers will save true education and real educators from the plague of stupid spread by entrenched special interests, self promoting inept administrators and way too many units of government.

    Tear the current system down to give the parents and teachers the money.

    This puts the power and educational values where they belong.

    Thank you for a brilliant summation Mark.

  15. Vouchers!?!?

    Seriously???

    That concept is doomed for failure of epic proportions and won’t solve a darned thing in this situation.

    Stick to the topic at hand.

    Cripes!

  16. Why should Superintendents, administrators, and teaches be allowed to leave a public school for whatever reason, but kids and parents are trapped.

    If the parent pulls the kid from the public school, the parents’ tax dollars remain trapped at the public school.

    That’s a big problem.

    Parents and kids don’t have enough choices or flexibility.

    In the above scenario, no matter how dysfunctional the board – Administration relationship, the school district does not lose a dime.

    The school district is a monopoly.

  17. Agree with markmaquire, school should be shut down, kids go to Cary or Crystal Lake — better for everyone.

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