Letters to the Editor

Who pays settlement? Marysville Letters To The Editor

A recent action by the Marysville School Board approved a settlement with an elementary school leader in the district who resigned after reaching agreement with the district that will pay her more than $175,000. An investigation instigated by the district, conducted by Terry Brandon could find that allegations against principal Jane Colson could not be substantiated.

As a taxpayer, one wonders why the district would seek an employee's resignation if no grounds existed to terminate such an employee. On the other hand, if an employee were terminated for cause why would taxpayer funds need to be expended to terminate such an employee?

After reading the investigator's report I make no conclusion as to whether the allegations had merit or not. But as a citizen who has always supported the district's request for funds, both levy and bond requests, I am concerned when the district can suddenly come up with over $175,000 for an issue such as this.

As I recall, the district has been going through a budget reduction process for several years. I believe that a reduction of approximately $1,000,000 was needed this year. And then in the midst of this budget reduction the district suddenly has 17.5 percent of the necessary reduction to pay an employee to leave.

It is also interesting that two votes of the School Board were needed to approve this payout. It appears that the Director who represents the area the employee worked in stated she had a conflict due to personal friendship with the resigning employee and did not vote the first time this came up for a vote. However, the issue was raised again a short time later and this director then voted to approve the settlement.

This situation makes one wonder whether or not the board operates under any type of "Rules of Order." Normally, a vote cannot be reconsidered unless the request is made by a person who voted in the majority. Since the first vote was a tie, there was no majority. So a lay person, such as myself, is totally confused on both the "budget deficit" and the rules under which the board operates.

Don Wlazlak

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