"We didn’t apply until the last week of school in June. (My wife and I) talked about it for years. It's not like I’m special. We decided after a meeting with Framingham Public Schools to pull out on June 12, which was long after the hearings and other stuff with it."
Those were the words of Robert Mealey, the Sudbury Education Association president who represented former first-grade teacher Janice Donahue the day she was told by attorney Elizabeth Valerio to decide whether to resign or be fired.
But according to the Sudbury Public School's website, Mealey, a Framingham resident, shouldn't have been allowed to have his son entered into the system by the superintendent unless there were "extenuating circumstances."
Section B of the Procedure for Enrollment states:
- Requests for admission must be made to the Superintendent of the Sudbury Schools by March 1 of the school year preceding the September in which enrollment is desired. All non-resident admissions will commence in September of the academic year. The Superintendent may waive this date under extenuating circumstances.
Mealey was asked whether he believed there was a conflict of interest in defending Donahue against Superintendent Anne Wilson and Noyes Principal Annette Doyle. He wanted to have his son enrolled in SPS, and he was also negotiating a new teachers' contract with Wilson.
"I don’t think it was a conflict of interest," he said.
Mealey declined comment Wednesday night.
Wilson and the Sudbury Public Schools Committee have said repeatedly they are not at liberty to discuss the incident, citing legal issues.
She recently signed a settlement, but is unable to discuss the amount. Noyes parent Christine Hogan recently made a public records request to Wilson to have that settlement made public.
Below is the SPS policy around enrollment of non-resident faculty students:
The Sudbury Public Schools provide a quality education to all of its students. It is a sign of confidence and support for our programs if employees wish to enroll their children in the Sudbury Schools. It is also an indication of appreciation of the staff for the Sudbury School Committee to approve the enrollment in our schools of the children of non-resident employees. This enrollment extends the benefits of our educational program to the children of those people whose efforts create the fine programs of the Sudbury Schools.
PROCEDURE FOR ENROLLMENT
A. Any non-resident employee desiring to enroll a child(ren) within the Sudbury Schools or Lincoln/Sudbury Regional High School will write a letter requesting this admission to the Superintendent of the Sudbury Schools.
B. Requests for admission must be made to the Superintendent of the Sudbury Schools by March 1 of the school year preceding the September in which enrollment is desired. All non-resident admissions will commence in September of the academic year. The Superintendent may waive this date under extenuating circumstances.
C. Along with the request for admission, the employee will include copies of educational records and information, if available.
D. The Superintendent will communicate his/her decision regarding enrollment no later than June 30 following the receipt of the request for admission.
E. This enrollment will continue so long as the employee is employed by the Sudbury Schools or the Lincoln/Sudbury Regional High School. It will continue, even though the non-resident employee is on an approved leave of absence.
F. Once enrollment is approved, the child(ren) of a non-resident employee will be considered a Sudbury school pupil until the completion of the eighth grade year, with access to all Sudbury school programs as outlined in this document.
G. Once the enrollment is approved by the Superintendent, the employee will complete all formal registration procedures.
H. The non-resident employee will be responsible for the transportation of his/her child(ren) to and from school.
I. All school rules, regulations, and fee requirements will apply equally to the child(ren) of a non-resident staff member.
J. A student whose parent leaves the employ of the Sudbury Schools or the may continue to attend the Sudbury Schools for the balance of the year.
CRITERIA FOR ENROLLMENT
A. The School Committee reserves the right to deny admissions to pupils based on space constraints of the district.
B. The Superintendent of the Sudbury Schools will determine the school in which the child(ren) will be enrolled. All efforts will be made to place the child(ren) in the same school building where his/her parent is employed, but space constraints and grade assignment may dictate a different assignment. Once a school assignment has been determined, it will change only due to progress through the grades or school re-organization.