Remember DeKalb County Schools? Nearly lost their accreditation because of a bickering board and so much general shenanigans that the Governor had to replace most of the board members? If you do, please tell Leo Brown about it, as that system seems to have slipped his mind. He supposedly works there as a “Chief Human Capital Management Officer” –he’s contracted with the school system to the tune of $175,000 per year– but he hasn’t been seen in a school building since before winter break last year.
Whatever a Chief Human Capital Management Officer is, Brown was hired by new DeKalb Schools Superintendent Stephen Green to be one, before going missing in December. The AJC’s Marlon Walker took notice of his prolonged absence in late February:
“District officials did not respond to emails last week about his employment status or where he’s been. He was not present for the DeKalb County Board of Education’s meetings in January or last week, as he typically would be. Brown has said he’s dispatched employees to job fairs and through partnerships with colleges while seeking teachers for hard-to-fill positions. The district has hired about 70 uncertified teachers since being awarded Strategic Waiver School System status, which allows flexibility from some state rules while holding districts to more strict standards. The district, however, has more vacancies (58.5) than it did this time last year (53.5), without employing uncertified teachers.”
So he was hired to fill vacancies, but DeKalb has more vacancies now than when he started? Maybe it’s good he went missing –the only additional vacancy he’s created is his own.
Except, this is DeKalb, so it’s never that simple.
Mr. Brown has since updated his whereabouts with a press release, affirming his commitment to the district and mentioning “medical challenges.” (The press release did not mention if Brown’s medical challenges included feelings of disorientation and whether they could be treated with a compass and a map.) As a contractor with less than 12 full months working for DeKalb schools, Mr. Brown is ineligible for paid leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act, and he’s been demoted all the way down to “Specialist II Compliance,” a very important position, but with a maximum salary of $63, 459.49 -less than half of Brown’s current $175,000 contract.
I’m no Chief Human Capital Management expert, but anybody who’s willing to not show up for a $175,000 job with no responsibilities and no consequences is probably going to keep not showing up if you pay him less than half that. You have to wonder how long he’d stay away if you paid him nothing.
As a DeKalb taxpayer and the father of two DeKalb school graduates, I’m grateful for the service of most of the regular employees in DeKalb Schools who aren’t “Friends of Steve” and who actually show up to do their jobs. And that is most of them –in fact the only two who are obviously NOT doing what they’re supposed to do are Human Resources panjandrum Leo Brown, and alleged Superintendent Dr. Stephen Green who hasn’t fired him.