Shandon superintendent firing costing district
November 4, 2013
The Shandon Joint Unified School District is paying the salaries of two superintendents while operating with a budget deficit because of the recent termination of its top employee. [Tribune]
Last month, the Shandon school board fired popular superintendent and principal of Shandon High School, Rodney Wallace, prompting students to storm out of class. The school board fired Wallace without cause and the district must pay his $112,500 annual salary plus benefits through June 30.
On October 21, San Luis Obispo County Office of Education hired retired Pleasant Valley Joint Union Elementary superintendent Tom Apkarian to serve as Shandon’s interim superintendent.
Apkarian is working two or three days per week and receiving $500 a day. The Office of Education hired him for no more than 30 weekdays as the district searches for a new superintendent.
After Apkarian leaves, the school district must repay the Office of Education for his work.
Shandon Joint Unified School District is already facing a budget deficit of about $100,000 for the 2013-2014 school year, because of state funding cuts. The district’s budget for the school year is about $3.6 million.
The school board fired Wallace during a special closed session meeting on October 15 and did not reveal its reason for doing so.
Numerous parents protested the firing at the school board meeting the evening before Shandon High School students walked out of class.
Before his termination, Wallace implemented a program at the high school that requires students to meet with teachers weekly to discuss how they can improve their performance in the classroom. Many parents credited the program with raising their children’s grades, but some teachers opposed participating in it.