Legislative Committee Releases Final Hill Report
The report by a special legislative investigation’s committee concerning Superintendent of Public Instruction Cindy Hill is out, and it is frankly damning.
The committee took no action involving impeachment of Hill, but left that option to individual members. Here are some excerpts from the report…
“The audit findings detail an education administration led by Superintendent Hill that cared little about the mandates of federal or state law and which regarded legal and regulatory compliance as a bureaucratic nuisance that could be overridden in favor of blindly pursuing new educational initiatives.”
“The Committee investigated the issue of Superintendent Hill reassigning permanent classified positions at the WDE into “at will” positions.
During the first half of 2011, Superintendent Hill made it well known that she believed all employees in the Department should be classified as at-will so that they could be terminated without cause and with no prior notice. She believed that as Superintendent of Public Instruction, she had the authority to reclassify vacant permanent positions as at-will positions.
For a period of time in 2011, Superintendent Hill required every new employee at WDE, including clerical and support staff, to sign letters which acknowledged that their employment was at-will.”
“As early as 2011, disturbing accounts of the management style of Superintendent Hill and her leadership team were reported to members of the Legislature. After the issuance of the MacPherson Report, and through this Committee’s investigation, many more allegations and instances of a management style best described as odd, erratic and troubling came to light. One of those allegations included demands on WDE employees for personal and political loyalty to Superintendent Hill.
While an elected official can direct programs and policies, the elected official, as a condition of employment, cannot demand absolute political loyalty. Insisting upon political patronage or loyalty is a violation of Wyoming Statute, the United States Constitution, the Wyoming Constitution, and is grounds for removal from office.”
“Firing of WDE Employee for Comments about Superintendent Hill:
The Committee finds that the incident where a probationary employee was fired constituted an attempt by Superintendent Hill to ensure political and personal loyalty in the WDE staff. This sort of petty and vindictive behavior not only sowed seeds of distrust towards leadership among dissenting WDE employees, but also hampered the ability of WDE to perform its assigned duties. The Committee also finds evidence of an improperly motivated firing for which Superintendent Hill and members of her leadership team felt the need to concoct a “cover story.”