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Thursday, September 27, 2012

Where's the Money? East Aurora School District Finance Chief "Retires" Early After Discrepancies and Questions



After several questions regarding financial discrepancies were raised, East Aurora School District's Chief Financial Officer Jay Augustine has retired immediately instead of November as originally planned.

"After further investigation of some of the anomalies regarding internal controls in the finance department, it was mutually decided between Mr. Augustine and Dr. Roberts (East Aurora School District Superintendent) to accept his retirement" according to Clayton Muhammad, district spokesman.

Recently, East Aurora School District entered into a scheme with the City of Aurora to exploit money from children, classrooms and taxpayers to give to Mayor Tom Weisner.

Augustine has overseen several financial blunders for the district, including but not limited to the Bigelow Hometown / Drive-In Theater Fiasco.

61 comments:

Anonymous said...

Augustine actually retired awhile ago; he just didn't tell anybody about it.

Anonymous said...

Another remnant of "Serial Bully" Radakovich's reign bites the dust. No surprise Augustine's corrupt like his former boss--maybe he can find a new job at Aurora University like Radakovich did.

Anonymous said...

John Struck also got a post-131 job at Aurora U. Cronyism's the way to go in this district.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget Jay was also in charge of district finances when the district sold the property that eventually became the Aurora Police Palace.

The district sold the property to investor buddies of Radakovich for 2.2 million dollars who immediately sold the same property to Walmart for 5.7 million dollars. The city then needed to buy the property from Walmart for the 5.7 million dollar price to build the Police Palace.

That deal only cost the district (and the tax payers of Aurora) 3.5 million dollars.

Anonymous said...

Why did it take Johnson so long but I guess better late than never

Anonymous said...

Love the the film clip!
I believe Mr, Augustine was always working, as directed, by his suervisor. Johnson chooses to defend her employee, Roberts and all his "blunders." Now everyone else is taking the fall.

Anonymous said...

Homecoming's tonight--can't wait to see the EHS band's performance, 7 years after it was "improved" by Radakovich & his cronies.

Anonymous said...

Well, if the band students spent their class time rehearsing band music instead of doing the Chicken Dance they might sound & look better.

Here are three examples (there are several more on the band's Facebook page):

http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=449130995125464

http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=3325995643638

http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=493206507369802

Anonymous said...

Wait, there's more!

http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=491246954232424

http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=3313097601195

http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=456148167761529

Anonymous said...

And STILL MORE--

http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=287814627990787

http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=287522071353376

http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=371837842892115

Anonymous said...

Hey, here's an idea--

Maybe the band's halftime show should be the Chicken Dance. The kids definitely know how to do it, and have a LOT of practice!

And why not invite administrators to dance along, too?

;)

Anonymous said...

I bet Jay Augustine can do a mean chicken dance :D

Anonymous said...

Yeah and the band is playing music on par with other area high schools instead of the high school band playing music on par with other area middle schools. It's nice to see high school musicians being challenged.

Anonymous said...

Oh, so the EHS band students' version of the Chicken Dance is more advanced than other high schools in the area?

Funny, I haven't seen any videos of students from other bands doing the chicken dance...maybe someone can post some :)

Anonymous said...

No comments about West right Rick maybe you approve of what Orland did to students. Being your daughter was his pet

Anonymous said...

6:31 - Shut up - You are just so stupid and refuse to see anything positive about anything.

I find it very telling that the music K plays at Simmons are the exact same pieces he played at the High School.

Anonymous said...

LIAR!!

I had kids in the EHS band in the '90s, and now have a grandchild at Simmons. I have programs from my kids' concerts AND Simmons, and can tell you that I have seen absolutely NO pieces listed on the Simmons concert programs that my kids played at EHS!

AND, my kids went to the IHSA Solo & Ensemble contests in the 1990's and got Division I and II ratings on their ensembles. They had never heard of anyone ever getting a Division IV--which several EHS students did "achieve" this past year.

6:31, many of us in this district have good memories AND proof positive (in this case, concert programs) that expose you for the desperate liar you are. And we will NOT shut up!

Anonymous said...

Wrong, he plays TONS of the same pieces that he programmed at the high school.

Your kids got a division one because he gave them 5th grade music to play. Any high school student can get a division one with 5th grade music.

Anonymous said...

Kaisershot is one of the laziest teachers in the district. He is burnt out, jaded and lazy. I can't wait until he retires and this district looses all that dead weight.

Anonymous said...

"...he plays TONS of the same pieces that he programmed at the high school"

NAME ONE. Just ONE specific example.

And if you can't--

then you are obviously a hatred-filled, paranoid, revisionist LIAR.

Anonymous said...

2:37 p.m. says:

"Any high school student can get a division one with 5th grade music"

ABSOLUTELY WRONG, because appropriate level of difficulty is one of the criteria listed on the judge's evaluation sheet. And the H.S. students are evaluated by impartial adjudicators with master's degrees in music (according to IHSA standards published on the website).

Go ahead, look for yourself. You can download the standards as well as a sample evaluation sheet.

Anonymous said...

I had 1 kid play 4 years for Kaisershot who went on to double major in Biochemistry and Music in college. I had another play 2 years for Kaisershot, but had to drop band because it interfered w/ NJROTC. I had a 3rd play 3 years for Liska (she did a foreign exchange her junior year). They all got I's & II's at contests. The biggest difference was my 3rd got to play in the Wind Ensemble (which K didn't have) and got to play more challenging music. The 1st one who majored in music came back and attended one of those concerts, and was impressed not only at the level of music the band (especially wind ensemble) was playing, but how well they were playing it.

Anonymous said...

4:21 p.m., I think I know who you are (are your initials C.D?) If so, then my kids were in band during the same time period. And I do not remember Mr. Liska's bands playing more difficult music than Mr. Kaisershot's groups did. I do remember my kids enjoying band under both directors, though!

Anonymous said...

Well 4:40, you don't remember because you choose not to.

There you had somebody who went to college for music, and says it is true.

But this blog will keep believing what they want to.

Anonymous said...

My kids & I remember a lot of things, including how embarassing it was for them when they played an arrangement of the Star Spangled Banner at two football games that was too difficult and confusing, and a School Board member accused the kids of purposely messing it up. I also remember some parents dropping out of boosters because of the attitude of the new director.

I guess a lot of us have selective memories where the band is concerned!

Anonymous said...

Okay, 2:37, we're waiting for even ONE SINGLE EXAMPLE of a piece performed at a Simmons concert that had been programmed previously at East High. JUST ONE...

...Or maybe on "Planet Moron" the word "TONS" translates to "NONE"??

Anonymous said...

Ok, Thanks for waiting.

Anonymous said...

9:55 I am NOT the person who talked about Simmons playing the same music that K had the high school band playing. I don't know if the other poster was telling the truth or not. I just had to comment that your immediate lowering of the level of discourse here into name calling doesn't help your cause. And your childish follow up posts don't help either.

Anonymous said...

10:17, thanks for nothing.

And speaking of waiting, a lot of us are still waiting for that improvement promised by administrators in 2005. We were told that a new director was necessary to improve the band program. We (parents, students, alums, taxpayers) overwhelmingly disagreed and objected to removing our beloved band director. Administration gave us (the community) the middle finger.

The more time goes by, the more that decision looks like it was purely a personal vendetta against an employee who refused to kiss ass.

Don't think some of us won't keep bringing this up as long as some of those administrators are still around. And the latest is, Juanita Wells wants back on the School Board--remember, SHE was the one who blamed the students for purposely messing up the National Anthem!

Anonymous said...

Ok, thanks for nothing new. You can't see the improvement because you refuse. I can't help it that you can see the improvement.

You will now say something about somebody being def - good job, again not original.

The current band program is improved in quality of playing, difficulty of material and size of band.

Anonymous said...

"quality of playing"--

If the EHS band musicians' quality of playing has improved at all, then why did not one single instrumental ensemble receive a Division I last spring from IMPARTIAL JUDGES? Add to that the fact that there were several (unprecedented) Division IV ratings awarded (again, by impartial judges with no axes to grind)--your claim of improved quality of playing is just plain LUDICROUS.

And about "size of band" being an improvement: when Mr. Liska came in he rearranged the bands to add a Wind Ensemble. Good thing, right? Maybe, maybe not--because the individual bands were TINY compared to the numbers in Mr. Kaisershot's groups. Some of us thought that the smaller bands were administration's idea to make up for the new director's inability to manage larger groups. Whatever--it is what it is, different but not necessarily better.

Anonymous said...

No, the new group was to separate students by ability rather than just throwing them all in together no matter how good they were.

Smalls bands require more personal responsibility on the students to play their part. When you have huge bands it is easy for the weaker players to hide.

See, everything done in this district is NEGATIVE in your eyes, which is why nothing you say matters.

The reason you don't know why there is a different structure is because you DON'T ASK ANYBODY.

You said it yourself "Some of us thought" - Some of you thought but did anybody ask?

I do claim that the quality is better. Your basis for 4 students receiving a IV means the whole band programs sucks is JUST PLAIN LUDICROUS.

Anonymous said...

Did I say that the whole band program sucks? No, I DID NOT. What I said was that if indeed the current band program is "improved in quality of playing", then that quality should have been reflected by impartial judges awarding EVEN ONE EHS ensemble a Division I rating (which they did NOT this past spring). The so-called "improvement" is a figment of certain people's imaginations--and that's without even considering the several Division IV ratings.

Your repeated use of absolutes such as "nothing", "anybody", and "all" just proves your ignorance and unwillingness to acknowledge any tiny imperfection in the way our district treated one of its best-loved teachers. That's okay; the current EHS band is a legend in YOUR delusional mind.

Anonymous said...

Not a legend, just not total crap like you would like everyone else to believe. Which is why you have never posted anything positive about the band and you just re-hash old arguments.

Anonymous said...

"re-hash old arguments"

Hypocrite!

How about the old arguments YOUR side rehashes, 1:34 p.m.? Like calling Mr. K lazy for the umpteenth time, or saying that he had his EHS bands play grade school level music (without being able to give ONE specific example), or making excuses for the downslide in solo & ensemble ratings since 2005.

Go ahead & point the finger at me, you'll have 4 fingers pointing back at yourself.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for being a complete waste of a person

Anonymous said...

I'll tell you what. Since you seem to be a collector of programs. You type in the names of 10 or 20 pieces off of his High School programs, and I'll look up the grade level for you. Are you willing to do that? Probably not, because you don't want to know the truth.

Anonymous said...

I'll do better than that. I'll give you a brief list of titles of pieces that were performed by EHS bands under Kaisershot and were ALSO performed (same piece & arrangement!) by Liska's supposedly "more challenging" groups post-2005.

Here goes:

To Dance in the Secret Garden
In the Bleak Midwinter
The Great Locomotive Chase
December 7, 1941
A Christmas Festival
La Menagerie des Joutes
Coast Guards
Chorale and Shaker Dance
Russian Christmas Music
3 Czech Folksongs
A Medieval Suite
Where the River Flows
Sleigh Ride
Voyages on a Rowing Song
Freedom's Light
Exaltation
Christmas Winds
On a Hymnsong of Phillip Bliss
Festive Songs of Christmas
Legend of Starved Rock

Those are just the concert-style band pieces; I could also list at least 25 jazz band pieces that have been performed by both pre- and post- 2005 EHS musicians. AND I have several CDs of the jazz band pieces as well as the programs to prove it.

That is the verifiable, documented TRUTH. So much for your claim that the bands are playing more challenging music...

...LIAR!

Anonymous said...

Also, I can give the specific date(s) for each performance of the 20 pieces I listed.

:)

Anonymous said...

Well here is what you don't know. Those pieces were not played by the Wind Ensemble except one. Which means that there are students at east aurora who can handle more challenging music.

Go ahead, post ALL the pieces K played and that Wind Ensemble played. There is the difference.

You want to be right sooooo bad by hiding the fact that the bands now are separated by ability and when you say "band" it does not apply to all students.

Anonymous said...

Oh, so now you're saying that only the Wind Ensemble is playing more challenging music than Kaisershot's groups did? Big difference...and nice backpedaling from your original argument that Liska's bands (plural) perform more difficult music!

While I wait for my booster pals to send me an updated list and further expose your "team" as LIARS, here's yet another list for your consideration. These are pieces performed pre-2005 under Kaisershot's direction that are advanced level (4 or higher) and have yet to be even attempted by the current director:

Suite of Old American Dances (Bennett)

Concerto for Trombones (Leyden)

Othello (Reed)
Sacred Suite (Reed)--the Alfred Reed pieces are no surprise, since Kaisershot was a friend of the late Dr. Reed!

Richard III (German)

Overture in B Flat (Giovannini)

Universal Judgement (De Nardis)

Concertino for Flute and Band (Chaminade)

Anonymous said...

6:23 a.m. said:

"Those pieces were not played by the Wind Ensemble except one"

~LIAR~LIAR~LIAR~LIAR~LIAR~LIAR~LIAR~

Here are FIVE specific examples of pieces performed by the EHS Wind Ensemble that had previously been performed by Kaisershot's bands, along with the specific performance dates:

December 3, 2009
--Sleigh Ride by Leroy Anderson

--A Christmas Festival by Leroy Anderson

May 5, 2011
--Chorale and Shaker Dance (also on April 2011 Fine Arts Festival concert)

February 18, 2010
--On a Hymnsong of Phillip Bliss by David Holsinger

February 5, 2008
--Russian Christmas Music by Alfred Reed


ONCE AGAIN, your "team" has been exposed as desperate, arrogant LIARS. Go ahead, make some more bogus claims. Those of us who remember the TRUTH will continue to set you straight ;)

Anonymous said...

What fun...

...I love seeing arrogant liars try to make excuses and then be exposed for what they are!

:D

Anonymous said...

None of what you said is true you just type more and think it is the truth. I noticed you didn't put dates for any of the "Grade 4 pieces" and you just put dates when Liska played the other Wind Ensemble pieces, not when K played them.

And there you go with the name calling because you can't come up with anything better to say.

Just because you call me arrogant and a liar does not make it true.

I don't believe you that K ever played. At least not since 1995 - So go back and find the dates.


Sleigh Ride by Leroy Anderson

--A Christmas Festival by Leroy Anderson


--Chorale and Shaker Dance (also on April 2011 Fine Arts Festival concert)


--On a Hymnsong of Phillip Bliss by David Holsinger


--Russian Christmas Music by Alfred Reed

By the way, this is my last post. I'm going to tell you that you win. You are always right, you will always be right. You are obviously way more knowledgeable then me, so much smarter and always right.

You have won. Kevin was the best band director in the state of Illinois, always perfect and never lazy.

Anonymous said...

8:20 a.m., you asked for specific dates from the actual programs as proof that these pieces were played by EHS bands pre-2005, under Kaisershot's direction. Here you go:


--Sleigh Ride by Leroy Anderson (performed 12/19/85 AND 12/13/98)

--A Christmas Festival by Leroy Anderson (performed 12/15/87)

--Chorale and Shaker Dance (also on April 2011 Fine Arts Festival concert) (performed 2/15/87)

--On a Hymnsong of Phillip Bliss by David Holsinger (performed 2/20/94)

--Russian Christmas Music by Alfred Reed (performed 2/15/87).


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So it is an indisputable FACT that these pieces were indeed performed pre-2005 by Kaisershot's bands. Once again you have been proven wrong. You claimed that Kaisershot's bands played only easy, non-challenging music and you were repeatedly confronted with evidence to the contrary, from community members whose memories go back a lot further than you might wish.

And one more thing: no one ever claimed that Kaisershot (or Liska, for that matter) was "always perfect". Just ONE MORE of your arrogant lies!




Anonymous said...

Band Nerd Fight!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Be quiet or I will unload my spit valve on you!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

What's so hilarious is that Openline is being taken over by the EA Blog people. The best thing I can say about the EA blog is it is consistent. I can go away for a month (or two or three) and check back in and read the same arguments over and over. It never changes. And now I can do the same w/ Openline!

Anonymous said...

The truth never changes.

Anonymous said...

Actually, what never changes is people's minds. They never seem to let something as silly as facts get in the way. I keep seeing the same level of truth and falsehoods from both sides of the discussion. And bringing it over to Openline, who is well known for twisting and distorting everything to fit his own views (or just quietly deleting those posts that hit too close to the truth and he can't twist them), doesn't exactly increase the credibility of the discussion.

Anonymous said...

4:50 p.m., I don't see at all that Openline is being "taken over" by EA blog people. It is very rare that Openline starts a thread about our district--I had to look back several months to find another discussion about D131.

Anonymous said...

Four years ago people asked questions about district credit card purchases. There were always lame excuses for the way the record keeping was done. They claimed to have changed things when the accountant came on Board.

These concerns were brought out during referendum discussions, years ago. So any discoveries by anyone are not anything new that the Board was not aware of 4 years ago. Either their backside was getting closer to the flame or a few are trying to boost their image with a D131 house cleaning campaign.

Many people have been members of this community a very long while and know that at least 2 board members have been a part of hiding the finance problems and that includes being a part of the frivilous spending. I won't mention names I'll say "I need a" pole and "a net" to gather up the spendthrifts andthose who have allowed it and toss them out.

Anonymous said...

I'm hoping that people keep this issue in mind when voting for School Board candidates this spring. Anyone who was part of the misspending in the past (*cough*Juanita Wells*cough*) has no business running again.

Anonymous said...

I really hope Juanita runs again. It'll be so satisfying to vote against her. Same for Mary Fultz.

Anonymous said...

Saw this on the Beacon's comments page:

"Three full pages in this morning's Sunday Beacon-News on this (four, if you count the front page headline). But no comment whatsoever from the district's usually eloquent spokesperson, Clayton Muhammad. Why not? Could it be that he doesn't want to acknowledge any tarnishing of the district's precious "IMAGE"?"

That's a grEAt question--where IS Clayton Muhammad on this? On the positive side, I do appreciate Dr. Roberts' "buck stops here" attitude in stepping up and answering the media's questions.

Anonymous said...

Saw this on the district website:


On Tuesday, October 2, six educators in East Aurora School District 131 were surprised with a special visit from OfficeMax representatives and were honored as the 2012 winners of the A Day Made Better program sponsored by Office Max and Adopt-a-Classroom.

Joy Dong of Hermes Elementary School, Cari Frer of Krug Elementary School, Kate Keilty of Simmons Middle School, Susan Moshinsky of Beaupre Elementary School, and Michele Romero of Johnson Elementary School, and Katie Sidmore of Brady Elementary School were all honored for their dedication to students and for making personal sacrifices to fund additional supplies for their classrooms.

Teachers spend roughly $1,000 out of their own pockets each year to offset school budget shortfalls and ensure that their students have the necessary classroom resources for learning. OfficeMax’s A Day Made Better program, in partnership with Adopt-A-Classroom, aims to help end the need for teacher-funded classrooms.

Each year, OfficeMax and Adopt-A-Classroom work with school principals nationwide to select and recognize 1,000 deserving teachers with an A Day Made Better award and $1,000 in classroom supplies donated by OfficeMax.

Each recognized teacher receives a digital camera, swivel chair, and large box containing essential classroom supplies – a total donation valued at $1,000. To ensure the donation matches the demand for classroom supplies, OfficeMax surveyed teachers and school administrators on their greatest needs

Since 2007, OfficeMax’s A Day Made Better and Adopt-A-Classroom have funded more than 5,500 classrooms with more than $4.5 million in grants and school supplies, and helped secure funding for more than 66,000 classrooms annually through donations to Adopt-A-Classroom.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So while our teachers fund their classrooms from their own pockets, our corrupt administrators help themselves to tax dollars for travel, dining, and entertainment.

School Board candidates, what do YOU plan to do about this??

No surprise here! said...

If you can't come up with a coherent argument, you can always just spew profanity.

Typical response from the denial & distraction team!

;)

Anonymous said...

You're so fucking stupid. What the hell are you even talking about? Denial of what? Distraction of what?

At least one of us is polite! said...

english.stackexchange.com/questions/156862/what-language-function-does-profanity-serve

Quoting from the above article:


"Profanity can serve any of several purposes in communication, and by doing so, it modifies the tone of the communication.

Here are some examples of what it can do:

add emphasis
shock or throw someone off balance
create a distraction..."

Anonymous said...

Ok

FUCK YOU (with emphasis)

Anonymous said...

No thanks...I have standards!

;)