Utterly astounded by tale of contrasting positions

Make text smaller Make text larger

  • Dr Freddie Evans (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

    Dr Freddie Evans (Photograph by Akil Simmons)


Dear Sir,

I refer to the recent controversy regarding the Commissioner of Education, Freddie Evans, who was apparently erroneously dismissed from his post via an e-mail communication to all teachers and principals, which was sent by the Permanent Secretary for Education, Valerie Robinson-James.

This is all rather curious when one considers that Dr Evans experienced previous and very positive employment reviews.

According to earlier appraisals for the years 2011-12, 2014-15 and 2015-16, Dr Evans was performing “substantially above requirements”. The final appraisal, covering his tenure as assistant director/acting commissioner, notes that the candidate had the potential to lead the public school system. Then one month before his “exit” was announced, performance appraisals on Dr Evans show a sharp drop in his evaluations and the “termination” e-mail was sent.

Because Dr Evans feels he was wrongfully dismissed, as apparently, the termination notice should have come from the Governor during his period of probation, we now have a legal action pending against the Ministry of Education and the Governor, John Rankin.

The latest instalment in this saga is in the form of a letter from the Public Service Commission to Dr Evans’s lawyer, Mark Diel, and Ms Robinson-James, which states that there was “an administrative error” in correspondence to Dr Evans — meaning he had not been fired after all.

But the letter, signed by PSC secretary Carlita O’Brien, added “nor has he been confirmed in his post”.

Contrast that scenario, with this:

We have the position of Secretary to the Cabinet, which also is Head of the (entire) Civil Service. According to the Sage Report, that post is not subject to performance appraisals, nor does it report to anyone directly. I repeat: not subject to performance appraisals, nor does it report to anyone directly.

I would ask you then: will anyone in that position ever be fired for poor performance? May this just be the best job one could ever hope to have?

It should be stated that I do not know either Dr Evans or Derrick Binns, the Secretary to the Cabinet, and it is not my intention to malign their character or performance.

What I am and have been utterly astounded by is the continuing acceptance of a structurally flawed management system of our Civil Service, for which there is an abundance of Sage Report remedies sitting on a shelf somewhere, collecting dust.

The previous administration failed miserably in this regard. It remains to be seen whether the present government will “step up to the plate”.

BEVERLEY CONNELL, Pembroke

You must be registered or signed-in to post comment or to vote.

Published Oct 12, 2017 at 8:00 am (Updated Oct 12, 2017 at 12:56 am)

Utterly astounded by tale of contrasting positions

What you
Need to
Know
1. For a smooth experience with our commenting system we recommend that you use Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Firefox or Chrome Browsers. Additionally please clear both your browser's cache and cookies - How do I clear my cache and cookies?
2. Please respect the use of this community forum and its users.
3. Any poster that insults, threatens or verbally abuses another member, uses defamatory language, or deliberately disrupts discussions will be banned.
4. Users who violate the Terms of Service or any commenting rules will be banned.
5. Please stay on topic. "Trolling" to incite emotional responses and disrupt conversations will be deleted.
6. To understand further what is and isn't allowed and the actions we may take, please read our Terms of Service
7. To report breaches of the Terms of Service use the flag icon

  • Take Our Poll

    Today's Obituaries