DENVER (AP) — Four new conservative members of a school board south of Denver have voted to fire the superintendent at the end of a week of controversy over the leadership and direction of the Douglas County School District.
The board voted 4-3 on Friday to fire Corey Wise without cause, effective immediately. He has worked for the district for 26 years and had just over two years left in his contract, the Denver Post reported.
“It’s more about finding someone who aligns better,” said new board member Kaylee Winegar. “It’s just that what we want to do with this neighborhood is different.”
New council members, elected in November 2021, rescinded a school mask mandate that was meant to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and asked for recommendations to change the district’s education equity policy.
The policy, which was passed in March 2021, calls on the district to create an inclusive culture and ensure the district provides equitable educational opportunities regardless of race, gender, gender, religion, disability or nationality. a person’s socio-economic status.
Friday’s meeting was scheduled after the three minority board members said at Monday’s meeting that they had learned that the chairman and vice chairman of the board had privately told Wise to resign or step down. to be rejected, even if the council had not met on this subject.
The allegations led to protests from school employees and parents – many of whom were already upset over the proposed changes to the equity policy. About 1,000 teachers called in sick and demonstrated in Castle Rock on Thursday to support Wise and demand board transparency, forcing the district to cancel classes.
The board took no public comment ahead of Friday’s vote to fire Wise, but all four majority members raised concerns about the implementation of policies set by Wise from the previous school board, such as the term of mask, and for his lack of response or knowledge of the actions of others in the neighborhood, for example, employees interrupting work to protest.
“I don’t think he’s doing a good job representing the board to staff,” board vice-chairman Christy Williams said, adding that she’s heard there’s there were times when he misrepresented the intentions of the board.
When asked to clarify, Williams said she heard multiple people say Wise said he was surprised the board hadn’t simply rescinded the equity policy.
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