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IN THE MATTER OF

THE GRIEVANCE OF
DONNA BLACKMON

BEFORE THE
BOARD OF TRUSTEES OF THE
DALLAS INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT

GRIEVANCE
On March 25th, 2015, Donna Blackmon (Blackmon) filed an internal grievance with the Dallas ISD
(District) against Wanda Paul, Chief Operating Officer for the District (Paul), and Tonya Sadler-Grayson,
Executive Director of HR Operations for the District (Sadler-Grayson) alleging violations of various local
rules and policies enacted by the Board of Trustees of the District (Trustees) under authority of the Texas
Government Code, Texas Education Code, and other laws including, but not limited to, unlawful harassment,
unlawful discipline, and unlawful termination by Paul and Sadler-Grayson as well as a bodily integrity claim
against Sadler-Grayson for an assault that occurred on or about March 6th, 2015, while Sadler-Grayson was
acting in her official capacity as an agent of the District.
The Level I Grievance Hearing was held on April 14th, 2015. Paul, who served as the hearing officer,
issued a decision granting the grievance in part. Blackmon appealed the denied portions of the grievance.
The Level II Grievance Hearing was held on May 20th, 2015, before Dr. James Terry, the Chief
Financial Officer for the District (Terry). Terry issued a decision affirming the granted portions of the
grievance and noted that the appealed portions were beyond the scope of the grievance hearing or outside
of the authority of the hearing officer to determine. Blackmon appealed the unresolved portions of the
grievance.
The Level III Grievance Hearing was held on August 20th, 2015, before a Subcommittee of the
Trustees consisting of Trustee Lew Blackburn as Chair (Blackburn), Trustee Nancy Bingham, and Trustee
Mike Morath. Blackmon stipulated during the hearing that one of the two unresolved portions of the grievance
that was appealed, the matter of investigation and discipline of Sadler-Grayson, had been satisfactorily
resolved prior to the hearing. The Subcommittees decision affirmed the Findings of Fact and Decision of the
Level II Grievance Hearing Officer and denied the appeal of the unresolved portion of the grievance.
Blackmons grievance requested relief through the following enumerated items:
1) Vacate termination of employment;
2) Allow grievant to retire;
3) Provide neutral job reference w/o negative comments;
4) Investigate and discipline Tonya Sadler Grayson; and
5) Two years severance including pay, benefits, and TRS service credit.
Blackmons requests for relief #1, #2, and #3 were specifically granted in the Level I Decision Letter
issued by Paul. Such was affirmed in both the Level II Decision Letter signed by Terry and the Level III
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Decision Letter signed by Blackburn. Blackmon stipulated that request #4 was resolved prior to the Level III
Grievance Hearing. Therefore, request for relief #5 was the only portion ultimately denied by the Trustees.
On August 21st, 2015, Blackmon provided the District with a signed HCM Separation Form designating
Blackmons retirement from the District as of March 6th, 2015, so that the District could comply with the
requests for relief which were granted.
Between August 21st and October 26th, 2015, Blackmon sent numerous communique to the District
regarding the completion of the requested relief items which were granted and, while one email response was
received during that time, no evidence was provided to show that the District had complied, or even began
moving towards compliance, with the granted portions of the grievance. As of the filing of this new grievance,
Blackmon has not received a substantive response from the District evidencing any compliance with the
granted portions of the grievance.
Blackmon was harmed by the actions of the District, through its agents Paul and Sadler-Grayson.
While the District may disagree, Blackmon believes that the portions of the grievance which were granted and
the ultimate termination of Sadler-Graysons employment by Michael Hinojosa, who became the
Superintendent of Schools after the Level II Grievance Hearing, serve as evidence and acknowledgment of
said harm.
Blackmon continues to be harmed by the Districts failure to fulfill its obligations under the granted
portions of the grievance. Said harm includes, but is not necessarily limited to, a significant impact on
Blackmons ability to pursue and obtain employment. Blackmon has applied for a number of jobs for which
she is highly qualified; however, she has not received any call backs or interviews after questions have arisen
regarding her separation of employment from the District. Blackmon believes that this is due to the Districts
continued failure to fulfill its obligations pursuant to the previous grievance.
Blackmon hereby files this new grievance and requests the following relief:
1) That Blackmon be allowed to waive the Level I Hearing in this matter;
2) That Blackmon be allowed to waive the Level II Hearing in this matter;
3) That this matter be placed on a duly posted meeting agenda to be heard before the full
Board of Trustees at a regular or special meeting held no later than December 18th, 2015;
4) That the Board of Trustees issue a resolution ordering Karry Chapman, in her official
capacity as the Chief of Human Capital Management, to:
a. Remove the termination letter from Blackmons employee file with the District and
provide documentation certifying the same to Blackmon;
b. Remove any and all references to termination from Blackmons employee file with
the District and provide documentation certifying the same to Blackmon;
c. Change Blackmons separation status with the District to retirement and provide
documentation certifying the same to Blackmon; and
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d. Provide a written substantive response to the question:


In the event that a prospective employer conducting a reference check asks Is
Donna Blackmon eligible for rehire?, what will the Districts response be?
5) That the Board of Trustees issue a resolution enjoining the District, through its employees,
agents, and/or representatives, from making negative comments about or from providing
anything less than a neutral job reference for Blackmon to any person.
6) That the Board of Trustees issue a resolution ordering that Blackmons effective retirement
date be moved forward from March 6, 2015, the same number of working days as the
difference between August 20, 2015, and the date that enumerated items #1, #2, #3, and
#4 are all completed, and further provide back pay commiserate to the same time period
at her last salary.
Wherefore, Blackmon prays that her grievance be heard, that all relief herein requested be granted,
and that all other resolutions be granted as the Board of Trustees may deem proper to ensure that the District
does not cause such or similar harm to others in the future.

Respectfully submitted,

Jeremy Liebbe, Representative


on behalf of
Donna Blackmon, Grievant

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