School board ordered to turn over e-mails
by Alexander Krughoff Staff Writer
Apr. 5, 2002
The Prince George's County Board of Education has lost another legal battle to School's Superintendent Iris Metts.
The school board has until April 22 to provide Metts with copies of e-mails and phone records by and between members or to third parties pertaining to to her work performance during the year leading up to her evaluation in August 2001.
Last week, Administrative Law Judge Judith Jacobson issued the court order as part of Metts continuing appeal of the negative evaluation the board gave her last summer.
Metts' attorney, Stuart Grozbean, has said the school board has refused repeated requests for the e-mails as part of that appeal.
School board member Angie Como (Dist. 1) is afraid that if the e-mails are released Metts could use them to bring civil suits against individual board members.
"I just can't see any other motive for getting those records," said Como.
Jacobson also ordered the school board to turn over all board member phone records and logs from July 27, 2001 through July 29, 2001.
"This just doesn't make any sense," said school board member James Henderson (Dist. 2). "This is illegal in itself. We are not worried about what is in the emails; it is the shear fact that they should not have access to them. I am just glad that I don't have my cell phone with the school system so they can't get my records."
Last month, Jacobson allowed Metts to continue her appeal claiming there were enough questions about how Metts' review was conducted.
The school board has rejected an offer from Metts' to settle the case out of court and is now facing overspending its budget to continue its legal battles against the superintendent.
Metts is disputing the score of 1.9 out of a possible 4 on her annual evaluations. Because of the negative evaluation, Metts' was denied a $35,000 salary bonus.
E-mail Alexander Krughoff at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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