Is the relationship between the chairman of Fayette’s school board and teacher groups across the country a conflict of interest?


At the request of former President Stephanie Spires, the Fayette County Board of Education has decided whether there will be a conflict of interest due to the election of President Tyler Murphy to the National Education Association’s board of directors. Ask for the Secretary’s opinion.

In the work session she raised the issue, Spires, still a member of the board, suggested that Murphy resign as chairman of the board if he did not want to leave NEA. She said it was a conflict because Murphy’s role in leading the board could conflict with the position of the National Teachers Association.

“My concern is that this looks like a conflict of interest with your role in the FCPS Board of Education. It violates the National Board of Education and Kentucky Board of Education Code of Ethics. Not only does it look like it does, but it also has a negative impact on the FCPS supervisor search, “Spires said.

“President Murphy, you spoke openly on your platform for transparency. In that spirit, if you want to continue to be a member of the FCPS Board of Education, your potential interests playing both roles. We need to seek the Attorney General’s opinion on the conflict. If not, we recommend that you submit your resignation immediately so that the board team can proceed with the district’s activities. “

Boyle County school teacher Murphy said that if a conflict of interest was found, it would resolve the situation and take the necessary steps to avoid the conflict of interest. Murphy said he would not hold the NEA position until September 1. He said he would work with Attorney General’s legal adviser Sherry Chatfield to ask questions to the Attorney General and publish a list of people who donated to NEA. motion.

“My primary commitment is to serve the children and families of Fayette County Public School,” Murphy said. “My commitment is to be as transparent as possible.”

Director Tom Jones said the Attorney General’s investigation should begin as soon as possible.

The Spires questioned Murphy’s honesty.

“This may be an honest mistake on your part and overlooked, but Murphy has lied and misunderstood his board colleagues many times over the past two years,” Spires said. It was. “In an email I sent to you on March 4, I said: I hope we can move forward as a team, but if something goes wrong or in Fayette County. If it has a negative impact on your school or students, speak up. “

Murphy was elected Chairman of the Board in January When Spears resigned as chairman.

As part of the NEA election process, Mr. Spires said Murphy accepted personal donations and campaigned as chair of the school board. She said his website did not accept donations from FCPS employees or contractors who are trying to do business with FCPS, but he did not reveal the list of donors.

“I hope you didn’t, but I and this board have a way to know if you’ve accepted donations from potential supervisors, their families, or the families of FCPS employees. No, “Spires said. She also sought an explanation of the role of the Fayette County Education Association, the Kentucky Education Association, and the Kentucky Education Support Professionals Association in his campaign.

Murphy removed the NEA campaign website during the school board meeting, and Spears asked if the website information would be shared with other board members during the meeting. Murphy said he would.

She said she was concerned that potential supervisory candidates would not consider Fayette County because the association of teachers has had a significant impact on Fayette County. The school board is looking for a director to replace Manny Caulking, who died in December. Murphy is a frank supporter of the Kentucky Education Association and the Fayette County Education Association.

Spear’s said he supports the Fayette County Board of Education and Fayette teachers, but members of the school board are elected to represent not only teachers but also the people who make up Fayette County. Was done.

“Our role is to defend our students,” she said.

Mr Spears said he had to resign from the community committee he was on when he was elected to the school board.

This article will be updated.