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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Okay, we already warned you once, twice, three times, four times ...



Another school board meeting. Another employee recommended for firing. Another long list of workplace transgressions that, if true, even a burger flipper's boss at Big Mo's Greazy De-Lux wouldn't have tolerated.

This time it's Dianne Leone, a language arts teacher at East Lake High School who has been written up 16 times (not counting the issues listed on her evaluations) since she began working for the Pinellas school district in 1984. According to the agenda packet: seven times for tardiness, six times for unspecified but uncorrected "job deficiencies," three times for insubordination, twice for "judgment," etc. The packet also says:

Despite numerous directives, Ms. Leone has failed to adequately develop a clear and consistent grading procedure. Ms. Leone is unable to describe her grading policies and procedures to students, parents and her administrators. Ms. Leone fails to preserve the confidentiality of personally identifiable student information by openly discussing student grades and accommodations. She disparaged one student by mocking her poor performance on the FCAT in front of other students; on another occasion, she refused to implement a 504 accommodation and again mocked the need for such accommodation. The conduct is an ongoing pattern of Ms. Leone’s lack of professionalism with students and parents.

Leone, who makes $61,173 a year, isn't the only employee being recommended for firing Tuesday.

There's also a Garrison Jones Elementary School teacher who, according to the agenda packet, was arrested for stealing equipment from a neighbor's yard and pawning it while on probation with the Florida Department of Education. He pled guilty to a lesser charge. Since 2004, he's worked at seven different schools. Since October, he's been written up five times.

Also on the agenda: an electronics technician at Walter Pownall who, according to the agenda packet, got caught by his supervisor, two days in a row, eating breakfast at a restaurant when he was on the clock. He's being recommended for five days without pay.

CORRECTION on Jan. 19: Leone began working for the Pinellas school district in 1984. The original blog post was incorrect on this point.


[Last modified: Thursday, January 19, 2012 11:33am]


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