Ramirez tested for the position of web developer in 2003, and was the only applicant not to complete the test – despite being given an extra hour. She passed only because one panel member gave her 8 out of 10 points for two questions she was unable to answer, according to McCauley’s testimony, and she was later promoted to the position.
The document that convinced a panel that former school district Personnel Director Abe Flory was wrongfully terminated also concludes that high-ranking officials allowed nepotism and racism.
And by accepting independent hearing officer Norman Brand’s recommendation that Flory should be reinstated and given more than $550,000 in back pay and interest, the Personnel Commission implicitly accepted Brand’s scathing determinations about the San Bernardino City Unified School District, according to Commissioner Rhonda Early.
“We accepted his findings, and some of the issues he raises will be discussed at the next Personnel Commission meeting,” Early said.
The commission is in charge of enforcing the merit system for school district employees other than teachers, counselors or administrators.
The panel’s findings – all based on the period leading up to Flory’s dismissal in 2007 – support at least some of the accusations Flory made about the district’s hiring practices.
“The district also complains about the allegedly false accusations of nepotism, cronyism and racism made in (Flory’s) newsletters,” Brand wrote after listening to testimony from Flory and district officials. “The evidence, however, shows two of the accusations are true and go to the heart of the battle over whether the district or the (Personnel Commission) should perform merit system functions.”