Call for Special SAU Meeting, Updated

Sent August 7, 2016 at 3:17 pm to all and only SAU Board members and

Dear Fellow SAU 55 Board Members:

Once again SAU 55 is being sued for its conduct with respect to the Right to Know law, and once again the SAU board has not been notified of this legal action against it.
A link to the Union Leader article concerning this suit is here:
I am asking all members to join me in calling for an out-of-cycle meeting to direct the superintendent as to how to respond to this new suit.
It is completely unacceptable that we as a board have not been informed of this legal action, we have not been provided with the suit, and have not been called together to direct the expenditure of public money in response to this suit – or not, as we, as a board, should decide.
Mr. Cipriano, I fully expect you to call an SAU meeting within the next week in keeping with both your authority and your responsibility.
This email will be posted to my blog and numerous Facebook sites, as will the chairman’s response.
Thank you,
Donna Green
Sandown representative to the Timberlane Regional School Board


Here’s the immediate response for Dr. Metzler.  (He receives all emails directed to

Thank you for your email.  I will be out of the office from 8/3/2016-8/7/2016 with limited access to email. If you need immediate attention, please email or call 603-382-6119-ext 2217. 

Readers, if the SAU should provide the board with the suit, I will publish it on this blog; otherwise, it is available to the public at the Rockingham Courthouse.

Update:   Dr. Metzler repsonded to me (not the SAU board) at 5:27 pm:



Dr. Earl F. Metzler

Sent from my iPad 

Here is Policy BDG:

The Board recognizes that the increasing complexity of school district operations frequently requires procurement of professional legal services. Consequently, the Board shall empower the Superintendent to contract with legal counsel as deemed appropriate.
A decision to seek legal advice or assistance in behalf of the school District shall normally be made by the Superintendent or by persons specifically authorized by the Superintendent. Such action shall occur as it is consistent with approved District policy or standard practice and meets an obvious need of the District. It may also take place as a consequence of formal Board direction.
Many types of instances of legal assistance to the District may be considered routine and not necessitating specific Board approval or prior vote. For example, the Superintendent may consult with the school attorney to interpret statutory requirements or regulations, prepare or review contracts and seek legal opinions regarding other District issues. However, when the administration concludes that unusual types or amounts of professional legal service may be required, Board authorization for such service shall be promptly requested.

From the superintendent’s response we can conclude that being sued by a member of the public will not incur “unusual types or amounts of professional legal service.”  Is this because it is now commonplace for our district to be sued?

UPDATE August 8, 2016:  A loyal and unfailingly perceptive reader pointed out that SAU Policy BBBH says in part:  5. Special Meetings: The SAU Board may hold special meetings at the call of the Chairman or at the request of any one of the member school boards. (Both TRSD and SAU 55 have the same Policy BDG.)



Filed under Sandown Issues

2 responses to “Call for Special SAU Meeting, Updated

  1. Hmmm indeed it’s sad that he is using the policy to sweep it away as “routine” so he can as usual hold all the power. Does the board get to now determine that they consider this non-routine?? How many times can TRSD be in the paper before it stops people from moving into the district? It won’t be routine then will it?!

  2. Mark Richards

    Why should the Board hand off a response to the superintendent at all? Even if named as a defendant (a term that is surely familiar) the Board has ultimate authority. I would avoid petitioning to “direct the superintendent as to how to respond to this new suit.” but rather simply to discuss a response. Of course, the response should be to release the minutes and promise (again) not to repeat the same violation (again).

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