School Superitendent's Son

parent

BGO
5-Year Member
I have been contacted by a candidate in a school district that the School Superitendent's son is applying along with a few others. The situation is that the School Superintendent has possibly used his influence with the teachers and principal to assist his son's application. For example his son was given a Co-President's position in NHS (appointed by teachers) and also was appointed to Boys State when others may have been more qualified. The candidate who contacted me is attending Boys State because after the Superitendent's HS said they did not offer Boys State, candidate then contacted another American Legion applied and was chosen. The Superitendent's administration then decided they would appoint the Superitendent's son too! The question is how does the candidate handle this situation where he believes there is an apparent conflict of interest. Should he approach the School Board? Contact an attorney to file ethics charges? (probably a bit extreme) Or... BTW I am not the BGO for this candidate or school.
 

kinnem

Moderator
5-Year Member
Just my opinion but I say let it ride and do nothing. Many kids get appointed to go to Boys State who were not "selected" for their achievements. As you know there is far more to an applications than President of NHS and Boy's State. Even if it was pursued I feel they wold be tilting at windmills.
 

Devil Doc

Teufel Doc
"The question is how does the candidate handle this situation where he believes there is an apparent conflict of interest. Should he approach the School Board? Contact an attorney to file ethics charges? (probably a bit extreme) Or... BTW I am not the BGO for this candidate or school."

If I were advising the candidate or if he were one of my students, I would advise him to contact the school board via the Board's admin assistant. They are the boss of the superintendent. I bet they would rather hear it before the media got wind of the situation.
 

NavyHoops

Super Moderator
5-Year Member
Have you talked to the AC? What did they advise? This is a tough one. I can see it from both sides, but don’t think it’s the BGO’s role to be directly involved.
 
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Old Navy BGO

5-Year Member
Interesting issue, I love dealing with ethics questions. Two thoughts:

1) I advise Candidates to worry about their application, and not what others are doing. USNA will decide on the merits of the individual application. Focus on what you can control, ie. Grades, SAT's, Leadership positions, etc. There are plenty of ways to distinguish the two applicants even if they both go to Boys State, and plenty of leadership opportunities beyond NHS. When it comes to teacher evaluations, they are confidential, and not competitive...teachers can write a great evaluation for both. (And frankly, depending upon the popularity of the Superintendent, some teachers may be harder on the Superintendent's kid).

2) It is not the role of the BGO to get involved in this type conflict. If a candidate brought this concern to me, I would tell him what I said above. Devil Doc has a good point about raising the issue with the Chair of the School Board, but I wouldn't do it myself as a BGO. I might suggest that the Candidate report it the School Board if the situation merits. In addition, if the situation merits, I might reach out to the Admissions Counselor and let them know the situation so they can be on the lookout for favoritism.
 

NJROTC-CC

Member
1) I advise Candidates to worry about their application, and not what others are doing. USNA will decide on the merits of the individual application. Focus on what you can control, ie. Grades, SAT's, Leadership positions, etc.
I agree 100%.

My DS has already run into an issue of perceived favoritism in a high school activity. I told him in a text that the worst thing he can do is feel jealous, angry or to complain about it. His response: "It's just going to make me work harder." It made me so happy to hear that from him. It's a good life lesson. Everyone will eventually experience a similar situation in the workplace either in the military or in civilian life.
 

momofmod

Member
Just a mom of a 2/C offering her 2 cents...If this candidate needs that much 'help' I can't help but believe USNA Admissions will see right through the BS. If the kid didn't have the stuff to legitimately earn anything it will be apparent. Also, just attending Boys' State isn't as important as excelling while you are there and earning the kudos/awards that result from it. Sometimes you just have to sit back and hope karma will step in.
 

parent

BGO
5-Year Member
Just a mom of a 2/C offering her 2 cents...If this candidate needs that much 'help' I can't help but believe USNA Admissions will see right through the BS. If the kid didn't have the stuff to legitimately earn anything it will be apparent. Also, just attending Boys' State isn't as important as excelling while you are there and earning the kudos/awards that result from it. Sometimes you just have to sit back and hope karma will step in.
You'd be surprised. Not sure USNA Admissions will know the kid was appointed to the positions and did not earn them. It is a check mark on application.
 

ders_dad

Member
Everyone will eventually experience a similar situation in the workplace either in the military or in civilian life.
This is, unfortunately, true. But it is definitely not the norm (not speaking about USNA, which I know nothing about, but in more general and experiential terms). Here's the thing - when it happens, everyone eventually knows it - but most especially, the beneficiary. (e.g, Courtney Massingale for a literary example but I can certainly think of at least one other real-world example).
 

NavyHoops

Super Moderator
5-Year Member
My favorite book.

To get back on point... this young man can’t rely on his Dad for help with his interviews. The BGO won’t care about his Dad’s position and if the MOC uses a board method for their Noms, so will they.
 

Korab

Member
So little Johnny's mom feels the Superintendent is stealing Johnny's thunder?

Assuming its true, a parent is using whatever influence they have to benefit their kid? How shocking!
Isn't this exactly what Little Johnny's mom is doing by tattling to the BGO?

Honestly, this report you received reeks of sour grapes and jealousy - which is one horrible smelling perfume.

Encourage them to go o the school board or do whatever they want - preferably is a very public way. If her complaints are true, they should be dealt with and the school board is the proper venue to do it. If it is just jealousy and sour grapes and her attempt to gain an advantage, Little Johnny's mom will either slink back to her lair or out herself for all to see. Either way, the process wins.
 

parent

BGO
5-Year Member
My favorite book.

To get back on point... this young man can’t rely on his Dad for help with his interviews. The BGO won’t care about his Dad’s position and if the MOC uses a board method for their Noms, so will they.
I get that but the candidate's family is concerned that the Superintendent's son is checking off the boxes and I am not sure how much USNA looks at the BGO interview . This year USNA Appointed the least qualified candidate IMHO. He was the MOC's principal nomination and ranked #1. There were several political factors with the MOC's slate. The candidates district is underrepresented so almost all who apply get nominated.
 

parent

BGO
5-Year Member
So little Johnny's mom feels the Superintendent is stealing Johnny's thunder?

Assuming its true, a parent is using whatever influence they have to benefit their kid? How shocking!
Isn't this exactly what Little Johnny's mom is doing by tattling to the BGO?

Honestly, this report you received reeks of sour grapes and jealousy - which is one horrible smelling perfume.

Encourage them to go o the school board or do whatever they want - preferably is a very public way. If her complaints are true, they should be dealt with and the school board is the proper venue to do it. If it is just jealousy and sour grapes and her attempt to gain an advantage, Little Johnny's mom will either slink back to her lair or out herself for all to see. Either way, the process wins.
How is this parent attempting to gain an advantage?Are they trying to level the playing field??? Help me understand your opinion and why you seems angry? I am just attempting to assist someone who approached me.
 

Korab

Member
So little Johnny's mom feels the Superintendent is stealing Johnny's thunder?

Assuming its true, a parent is using whatever influence they have to benefit their kid? How shocking!
Isn't this exactly what Little Johnny's mom is doing by tattling to the BGO?

Honestly, this report you received reeks of sour grapes and jealousy - which is one horrible smelling perfume.

Encourage them to go o the school board or do whatever they want - preferably is a very public way. If her complaints are true, they should be dealt with and the school board is the proper venue to do it. If it is just jealousy and sour grapes and her attempt to gain an advantage, Little Johnny's mom will either slink back to her lair or out herself for all to see. Either way, the process wins.
How is this parent attempting to gain an advantage?Are they trying to level the playing field??? Help me understand your opinion and why you seems angry? I am just attempting to assist someone who approached me.
If the complaint is true it’s a parent attempting to level the playing field. If it’s a parent jealous that the superintendent’s son is getting opportunities her son isn’t, and blaming it on improper influence, then it is her trying to better her son’s position by influencing the BGO behind the scenes. Rather than operate behind the scenes, the complaining parent should be forced out in the open - sunlight is a great disinfectant.

Not angry at all - but it is all to common an occurrence for parents to feel like a child who has achieved something their child didn’t only achieved that something because of some improper influence or advantage.
 

NavyHoops

Super Moderator
5-Year Member
I get that but the candidate's family is concerned that the Superintendent's son is checking off the boxes and I am not sure how much USNA looks at the BGO interview . This year USNA Appointed the least qualified candidate IMHO. He was the MOC's principal nomination and ranked #1. There were several political factors with the MOC's slate. The candidates district is underrepresented so almost all who apply get nominated.
But you and I both know... least qualified and still qualified and using a principal nom slate the chances of them being appointed are extremely high with that method. It sucks that the MOC allows political influence, but it is their nom. The candidate can either report this or not. I don’t think it’s the BGO’s space to enter. My question is to that candidate, how much will this distract from their application? Focus on them and put the best package together. If it was meant to be, then it will work out.
 
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If this were my candidate, I would advise him to just focus on putting forth the best package possible, and tell him why. The "unfair advantage" that is alleged isn't that big of a difference maker. Sure, NHS president and Boys State are nice accomplishments, and definitely add a few points to the WPM. But they are FAR less important that SAT scores, Class Rank, and other factors that carry more weight, and it doesn't seem that those are being messed with. Also, I would assume that most teachers wouldn't write a LOR that was unfairly (or dishonestly) helping one candidate over another, even if the Superintendent hinted at it. At the same time, it's perfectly reasonable and expected that they HONESTLY write a stronger LOR for one candidate over another, if it's warranted.

Now, if you had said that the Superintendent was close buddies with the Congressman (ie. demonstrable proof), and you had reason to believe that the MOC was going to award a Principal Nom as a favor, or in return for something, that would be a different story. Most MOCs are very careful to avoid even the appearance of favoritism, but it does happen.
 

momx3

Member
It is a sad testament to what goes on daily in too many areas of society. It is also an early 'wake up call' to the candidate about what does happen in 'the real world' and that they are not in control of anyone's actions but their own, and that yes- life is unfair, and 'unfair' things will happen. Just advise the candidate to move forward and use it help propel him to be even better.
 

Old Navy BGO

5-Year Member
This year USNA Appointed the least qualified candidate IMHO. He was the MOC's principal nomination and ranked #1.
> This may be true, but keep in mind that BGO's don't see the whole application. There have been plenty of times that the Candidate that I view as the best fit for USNA is not accepted. (It is usually an obvious emphasis on SAT scores/Academics v. other qualities).

It sucks that the MOC allows political influence, but it is their nom. The candidate can either report this or not. I don’t think it’s the BGO’s space to enter.
> Agree 100% -- I'm not going to touch the MOC/political sphere with a 10 foot pole, and frankly wouldn't even suggest it to the Candidate. That is playing with fire , and it could backfire.
 
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