Panther Valley school director R. "Mickey" Angst has filed a response to the school board's request to Carbon County Judge Joseph J. Matika that he reconsider his March 8 ruling that allows Angst to attend executive sessions, but forbids him from disclosing any confidential or privileged information or material.
The school board on March 18 asked Matika to reconsider his ruling. The school board at a public meeting on March 28 ratified the motion to request reconsideration.
The board's 14-page petition includes 52 points. They include: That Matika based his ruling on a "past banning done by the board by vote at a public meeting and to which R. Mickey Angst was given the opportunity to appeal and have a hearing which he waived, and acquiesced to the ban. The issue of the past ban was not before the court; that Angst has "clearly shown that he will not follow the advice of the solicitor or the board president when, despite admonitions not to reveal the name of an employee during a public meeting, chose to blatantly disregard those warnings and intentionally blurted out the name anyway; it is believed and therefore averred that Angst will continue to follow his own subjective rules as to what is confidential and what is not based upon his subjective feeling as to whether the public needed to know certain information.
The petition also references the case law cited by Matika in his ruling, and other arguments.
Angst's March 21 petition asking Matika to deny the board's request, reads exactly as follows:
"The school district's petition is misguided, based on faulty information and is shockingly insulting to you. On the contrary I am impressed with the extent of your legal research and now understand why it was so long in coming. It already is having a positive effect on both the board and me. There have been no more executive sessions of only four members but now there is a scheduled executive session for all board members with a proper and legal agenda. Be assured I have not and will not conduct myself as a rogue irresponsible board member. The version of the meeting where it is claimed I identified a staff member who was scheduled for paid administrative leave is faulty and was based upon extremely bad legal advice. The staff member in question is the brother of the board president. His identity was publicly revealed by the administration and I raised questions at the public meeting because I felt the board president should not have been presiding while we acted on that agenda item. At a previous meeting when a teacher was to be suspended by initials and then later by number I questioned whether this was proper and the solicitor agreed with me that it was not and we fully identified the employee. On that basis I indicated I would not vote in the blind, identified the employee and requested the minutes include the name just as it was in the previous situation. I am confident you have ruled wisely and will do all I can to bring transparency to the Panther Valley School District without violating any school codes or laws.
Deny the petition."