Over the past few weeks, I’ve written several articles about Patrick Miller and Dr. Susan Bunting. As sources continue to give me more information, the news from Governor Carney and the Delaware Department of Education in response to this have been non-existent. Half the state knows about this but the state agencies involved with this are on mute.
This is Delaware. Quiet as a church mouse when we discover corruption, fraud, and abetting. But when they want to cheer about something, they never shut up about it. Like the (yawn) Smarter Balanced test scores. My guess? Governor Carney and the Delaware DOE are hoping this just goes away. That interest in this will fade away as the summer says hello to fall. Sorry guys, I’m not backing down and I will write about this every single day until you speak up!
But I am going to give Delaware Secretary of Education Dr. Susan Bunting a chance to come clean about what she knew about Patrick Miller stealing money from kids. As well as all the other bullying and intimidation he created in the district. As you said many times, the buck stopped with you. With that being said, I challenge you, Dr. Susan Bunting, to contact me. You have my number. I will give you a chance to tell me the truth. If there are certain factors for why you kept quiet over the past decade about Patrick Miller, let them be known. He only has as much power over you as you allow him to have. He stole hundreds of thousands, if not millions of dollars, from the district. This is your chance to let the people know. In doing so, I also want to know who else knew. Board members, other administrators, anyone.
After this, I would like you to submit your retirement papers to the State of Delaware, effective immediately. From what I’m hearing, you might be doing this sooner rather than later. Waiting until Governor Carney’s term ends is no longer an option. But please understand, you have lost all credibility with citizens of the state. You can’t be trusted and you certainly cannot perform the functions of the top education official in this state.
Like I’ve said before, I liked you. I trusted you when I sat in your office in February, 2017, a couple weeks after you were confirmed as Secretary of Education. You looked me right in the eyes and told me you didn’t know Patrick Miller was doing what he did. It wasn’t for the good of the district that you kept his secrets. It was for your own sense of survival. You knew your name would be attached to his stain if it ever came out that you knew. You have accomplished a lot in this state. But that does not make what you did okay. It doesn’t justify it.
I know, as a lifelong educator, you have fought to do what is right for kids. But with that comes a responsibility not only to educate children but to hold the adults accountable on your watch. That includes yourself. I would hope this heavy burden on your conscience has been hard for you. It should be. This is your chance to purge yourself. Let the people know your knowledge of his sins. It is okay. Let go. History will judge you based on your response to this. Redeem yourself. Please. Saying nothing and leaving a cloud over your entire career is a far worse fate. Accepting true accountability for your actions, just as you would expect from students, is the way to go. Be the person I thought you were.