March 1, 2004 – After getting several calls emphasizing the importance of her role as co-chair of the territory's Education Compliance Agreement Task Force, Juel Molloy said on Monday, she has decided to reconsider her resignation from the post.
Sen. Lorraine Berry, in her weekly morning radio broadcast on Monday, made a public plea to Molloy to resume her leadership role with the task force, which she co-chaired with Ira Mills, director of the Office of Management and Budget.
The task force was formed in 2002 when the territory entered into a compliance agreement with the U.S. Department of Education. The V.I. Education Department was on the verge of losing its federal schools funding because of prior mismanagement of education grants.
"I am reconsidering," Molloy said on Monday of her resignation from the task force. "It is my hope to talk to the governor at length about the matter."
Molloy, whose full-time job is chief of staff to Gov. Charles W. Turnbull, said she has no problem "giving attention" to the compliance agreement, but she is participating in "a number" of things currently and feels like she is being "stretched thin."
"I realized that I was really overextending myself and that I had little personal time," she said in explanation of her resignation.
Molloy's resignation generated concern on the part of the Board of Education, which sent a letter to the governor expressing its displeasure at her leaving. The school board received nothing in writing from Molloy, nor was it given a reason for her departure, Tregenza Roach, board executive director, said on Monday. Members learned of the action at a recent meeting not attended by Molloy.
In the school board's letter to Turnbull, Harry Daniel, board chair, stated: "As a signatory to this historic agreement, the board is concerned about the implications of Mrs. Molloy's departure both with regard to our ability to meet the terms of this agreement and with the perception of federal officials about [the loss] of a person from the task force who has been touted locally and nationally for her ability to get things done."
Roach said the board is not implying "that one person is responsible" for seeing that the terms of the compliance agreement are met, but he said that Molloy served an important role as co-chair. "We cannot proceed in any way that jeopardizes our ability to perform," he said.
Two critical issues currently face the board, Roach said:
– Getting accreditation for all four public high schools.
– Meeting all mandates of the compliance agreement with the U.S. Department of Education. "The board's position is that working together and being committed in this effort, we can come into compliance," Roach said.
Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name, and the city and state/country or island where you reside.
Publisher's note : Like the St. Thomas Source now? Find out how you can love us twice as much — and show your support for the islands' free and independent news voice … click here.