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Dallas School Board Will Decide Superintendent's Future This Week

Bill Zeeble

The Dallas school board could decide to keep or dismiss Superintendent Mike Miles this week after the fall-out from an investigation that found he violated district policy.

Many Dallas school board members have remained silent since the report released Friday said that Miles twice violated district policy by trying to interfere with an investigation into how he handled a contract.The report says each violation by Miles, under the terms of his contract, constitute “good cause” for dismissal.

The report also concluded Miles helped write a departing administrator’s resignation letter which disparaged board members.

Former school board member Bruce Parrott, who voted to hire Miles, says it may now be difficult for the board to trust him.

“I would say he’s going to have a pretty rocky relationship if he continues. With all this going on, education is lost when it comes to the focus,” says Parrott. “It just breaks my heart.”

Trustee Mike Morath, however, is hearing strong backing for the embattled superintendent.

“The feedback that I’ve gotten from constituents is that you should support Miles.”

Morath also apologized for meeting with Concilio, a non-profit seeking a school contract. The Coggins report said contractors are not allowed to discuss business matters with an individual board member.

“My work to try to help kids may have done more harm than good in this instance,” said Morath.

Speaking for thousands of Dallas teachers as President of the Alliance AFT, Rena Honea, a longtime critic of Miles, doesn’t see how trustees can continue with Miles.

“It’s going to take a lot for people to be able to trust him and to be able to follow the type of leadership he’s pushing through, without support. It’s his idea, his plan, and there’s no collaboration in making that happen. And if they don’t follow their to constituency’s lead, I think we’re going to continue to see the turmoil this district is in.”

 Miles’ future in Dallas and a discussion of the Coggins report are among the first items the board considers at its meeting Thursday.  KERA sought comment from Miles for this story.

Bill Zeeble has been a full-time reporter at KERA since 1992, covering everything from medicine to the Mavericks and education to environmental issues.