Andrea Thomas-Reynolds
Andrea Thomas-Reynolds

Board members for New Orleans’ only all-male charter school this week voted to appoint an interim chief executive officer in a meeting that was initially publicized to be held three days later.

Andrea Thomas-Reynolds, who has consulted with Miller-McCoy Academy for Mathematics and Business since September, will run the eastern New Orleans campus through the end of the school year. Details about her contract and salary were not immediately available.

Board chairman Michael Todd and public relations consultant Paul Dauphin said that Dauphin mistakenly posted a notice that the meeting would be held on Dec. 6. The meeting actually was held on Monday, Dec. 3.

Todd emailed his fellow board members on Friday, Nov. 30, to alert them to a special meeting called for “Monday, December 6th” — an error since Dec. 6 was Thursday. (He provided those emails to The Lens in response to questions.)

An agenda posted on the school’s website Friday stated the meeting would be Dec. 6, but it did not mention the day of the week. Another agenda now available on the website lists it as Monday Dec. 3.

In an interview with The Lens on Thursday, Dauphin said he was the one who posted the original, inaccurate notice. He said someone quickly alerted him to the error — which he called “a typo” — and he  fixed the date. He did not note that the meeting date had been changed.

Indeed, in the email exchange Todd supplied to The Lens, Todd’s first email to board members about the special meeting went out at 1 p.m. Friday. At 2:16 p.m. Todd emailed the board again to say the meeting would be held Dec. 3.

“I apologize for the error,” Todd wrote.

Lens reporter Kelsey Foster, who regularly covers the board and has requested notice of such meetings, said she saw the original notice and received nothing to alert her to the change. The Lens did not have a reporter at the meeting due to the mix-up.

After being questioned about the changes, Todd said the school would change its process for notifying the public about its meetings. Lens reporters will now receive email notification in advance of all meetings; and Dauphin, of Pierre Principle Communications, will handle all board communications with the media.

Despite hiring Thomas-Reynolds, Todd said the school will conduct a formal search for a permanent leader that he hopes will conclude in the spring.

Thomas-Reynolds has 20 years experience in nonprofit management, according to a press release sent out by the school.

Rebecca Catalanello

Rebecca Catalanello edits the Charter School Reporting Corps. A New Orleans native and graduate of Benjamin Franklin High School, Catalanello spent much of her 15-year newspaper career covering K-12 education....