Ignorance is not an Excuse

Tamar Galatzan was the guest speaker last night at the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council meeting. When speaking about the ongoing MiSiS crisis, she stated that “It went live, it didn’t work. It turns out now that a lot of people within the district probably knew it didn’t work. The board did not know, we did not get one update on it. We found out that the system went live when we read about it in the newspaper.” When questioned by the council about how this could have been a surprise, she responded that “I don’t know what I know what I don’t know.” They further pressed her on how the Board can avoid similar problems in the future if they do not take responsibility for their lack of oversight. Ms. Galatzan said that she was “happy to take blame for not knowing about this, I just, I don’t know how I don’t how I don’t know what I don’t know about it.” She then went on to say that she holds the Superintendent and his staff responsible for it.

 

If Ms. Galatzan was oblivious to the pending crisis as the first day of school approached, she has only herself to blame. She admits that when the Board gave their approval for funding of the project they requested to be notified as benchmarks were reached. If these reports were not forthcoming, then she had a responsibility to ask for them. In July, her fellow Board member, Bennett Kayser, was concerned enough about the problems that were occurring with the system during the summer that he send a letter about them to Superintendent Deasy. As the first day of school approprached, online watchdogs were warning of impending problems due to MiSiS. It was only after thousands of students were affected during the first week of school that Ms. Galatzan finally spoke on the subject.

Ms. Galatzan should have known better. She has been on the board for seven years and saw firsthand the problems that occurred when the implementation of the payroll system was botched. Someone who had learned the lessons of that crisis would have made sure that she was on top of things when another major system was implemented. Instead, she failed to supervise the Superintendent once again and the results have been disastrous. The fact that she cannot take responsibility for what she did wrong leaves the stakeholders at risk for another costly disaster for as long as she remains in office.


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