Comments for: Brunswick schools out almost $6,000 after contractor disappears

Posted Nov. 15, 2012, at 11:03 a.m.

BRUNSWICK | The School Department is out more than $5,600 after the company it hired to manage substitute teachers apparently disappeared. Superintendent of Schools Paul Perzanoski on Wednesday said he has been unable to reach anyone at Syracuse, N.Y.-based Central Xchange, which provided an online service called Sub-IT to …

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  • Anonymous

    I have an idea. Instead of hiring outside companies to “manage” the substitutes, how about hiring a Maine resident or residents to do the same thing? Didn’t we use to manage our own school system and teachers? Why do we need outside help. Regarding this fiasco,anyone can get taken. If they did their due diligence with an out of state company and still got taken…lesson learned and move on. Hire local!

    • Anonymous

      How much would it cost to hire a qualified person to do the job? I suspect that wages and benefits paid to a local person would be much more than contracting out with a “reputable” company. School budgets are very tight.

      • Anonymous

        Just make it a stipend to a qualified teacher or ed tech

      • Anonymous

        Good point. What exactly are they managing though? How did we use to do this? Am I missing something here? On the one hand you have a list of substitute teachers and their qualifications (verified one would hope) on the other side you have teacher’s scheduled time off or unscheduled time off. You call the subs qualified and match them up. I know that is an over simplification but really!

        • Anonymous

          I taught school over 30 years ago fresh out of college.I hated calling in sick as you sensed that your boss was none too happy about replacing you for the day. Finding subs starting at 5 in the morning is not something that most principals want to have on their plates. These services are supposed to provide qualified teachers, not just babysitters. A lot of these school systems have fewer people now due to budget cuts. Principals are often asked to do more with less. Trust me-chasing down the right folks to handle a classroom for the day is time consuming.All of us remember the abuse the subs took.

          • Anonymous

            I can understand that. Yes, I do remember subs in school God Bless them! Thank you for your input. Maybe that is a business that could be developed here in Maine. Anyone?

          • Qualified Maine subs though, correct? Obviously the subs aren’t going to be deployed from NY every time one is needed. Cheaper or not, it does seem a bit absurd.

          • Anonymous

            The vetting process must be a factor as well. We’ve all heard horror stories of predators finding their way into the classroom. Perhaps these large scale operations have better tools available to root out these people before they have have the opportunity to harm a child.

          • Perhaps. Though shouldn’t the vetters be vetted themselves?

            Perhaps, it’s just a case of getting what one pays for. Doing things on the cheap usually doesn’t pay off in the long term.

          • Anonymous

            One would hope that everyone involved is thoroughly checked.With everything available online It’s difficult to run from your past these days-but not impossible. I remember having subs when I was a child that looked like the cat dragged them in.

          • Anonymous

            Or maybe being a larger entity, it would be easier for someone of thet nature would fall through the cracks or a background check would be overlooked. local people know local people and are better suited for this task

          • Anonymous

            Most people have known and trusted camp counselors, boy scout leaders,child care workers, clergy and so on. Just because someone is a local does not guarantee safety for kids.Fingerprinting etc. can find someone who is a past offender, but not someone who’s yet to be caught. It’s scary any way you cut it.

          • Anonymous

            True.

          • Anonymous

            The scamming company should have been vetted.
            And the school administrators also , that picked these crooks.
            Smarten up already.

          • Anonymous

            #$%T HAPPENS

    • Yep…”Buy Local” doesn’t stop at the farmers market.

    • Matthew Desmond

      My mother used to substitute at our school and they had one of the administrators call her up and ask her to sub. Usually 3 times a week or more. Hiring an out of state contractor was definitely an inappropriate use of tax payer dollars here…

  • Anonymous

    Feelgood central down in good ole Brunswick is showing that there isn’t much of the three Rs being taught in their school system.But I’ll bet dollars to doughnuts that they have been taught the politically correct way to deal with special interest groups.

  • Anonymous

    Great! Our taxes went up 5 1/2 % because we lost $2-3 million from the state and now we have a $2.4 million surplus. If they roll this forward to next year I would hope that means our taxes won’t be going up next fiscal year. However after talking to a woman on the school board she said that might not be the case even though we have several hundred students less because of the base closing. I hope the people of Brunswick wake up next year when the school budget is being discussed and remnd the superintendent and school board of this surplus.

  • Anonymous

    Did they do ANY research of this company before they hired them? Oh, and the word startup should be a red flag…

  • Anonymous

    Perhaps the superintendent could keep this as part of his duties–oh, maybe the teachers’ union won’t allow it!

  • Eyah. Privatize it. Save money.

    The humble Farmer

  • Emmaline Greensward

    Why in the world was the district using a company so far away? Makes no sense.

  • Eric Jackson

    Thousands of dollars per year spent so a principal doesn’t have to manage a list of substitutes? Sure let’s cut programs and institute parking or participation fees but don’t expect the principal to manage a call list. Must be brutal to sit at a desk and use a phone.

  • Anonymous

    When I substituted there was a local woman who handled the list. Her husband was the band instructor. I have no idea how salary/benefits/401K etc worked. She would call me at the beginning of the month with preplanned assignments. Then as other outages occurred she’d know which subs were available and what our preferences were. The teachers knew us and we knew them. Some would request me as I’d attended college with several and I’m sure there were subs who were invited not to return. Does not seem to me this process has become so big and involved that an out of state online system is needed. Wow is all I can think.

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