There was an interesting development at the Tuesday, January 24, 2023 meeting of the Atlantic City, New Jersey Board of Education.

Even in the bizarre world of New Jersey and Atlantic City politics, this one is a head scratcher.

New Jersey State fiscal monitor Carole Morris overruled an Atlantic City Board of Education decision not to hire former Superintendent Barry Caldwell to a $ 600 per-day position.

Morris did so less than one day after the board decision not to hire Caldwell was made.

The board voted down Caldwell on December 13, 2022 and Morris reversed the decision just hours later on December 14, 2022.

We published the Morris letter on January 6, 2023.

Here’s the letter:

Atlantic City Board of Education letter.
Atlantic City Board of Education letter.

Morris questioned the board last night in open public session and suggested that there will be an investigation into how we obtained the letter.

This is rather interesting, as there has been no sense of urgency to investigate Atlantic City students being sexually assaulted … yet, they want to investigate our receipt of this benign public document.

If you missed our coverage on both topics (Caldwell and student sexual assaults), here are direct links so that you can catch-up:

Read More: Atlantic City Hires Former Superintendent: The Approval Letter

Read More: Atlantic City Has Not Addressed Student Abuse & Sexual Assaults

At the time of the Morris decision, we reached out to Atlantic City Board of Education Member John Devlin, who said:

"I want to be surprised; however nothing surprises me these days. To allow Caldwell to take a key position in this district after the board voted him down is a total disgrace. I guess he couldn't make it in the real world, so he needed a hook-up from Small and company for a cushy job. To come out of retirement and take a position for over $600 a day to do who knows what is a smack in the face to every child, parent and tax payer in this town," said Devlin.

The hiring of Caldwell was not on the Atlantic City Board of Education meeting agenda of December 13, 2022 and board members were given no advanced notice by Small that this would be added.

Atlantic City Superintendent La’Quetta Small did the same earlier in the year, when she snuck-in another former Atlantic City Superintendent for a taxpayer-paid job, by listing the person on the board agenda as Robert Harris ... When everyone knew him as Mark Harris for decades.

Board members confirmed to us that they did not know that they had hired a previous Atlantic City superintendent, until after the vote was already taken.

Regarding the suggestion last night to open an investigation into how we obtained the Carol Morris letter, we reached out to Devlin for a public comment.

"I was taken back when we (the board of education) were addressed as though we did something wrong. This is exactly what happens when you have an administration that refuses to be transparent not only with their own board of education but to the community in general. Instead of focusing on a leaked email, they should reallocate their resources on how a sexual predator related to Dr Small are able to create havoc on our district,” said Devlin.

During the public portion of the last night’s meeting, Atlantic City Activist Steve Young criticized that no action has been taken regarding Atlantic City students being sexually assaulted.

Atlantic City Board of Education President Shay Steele had the Atlantic City police escort the animated Young out of last night’s board meeting.

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