(Posted March 20, 2019)
By Michael Williamson, Staff Writer
A technology coordinator for Madison-Plains Local Schools has been suspended.
On March 19, the school board moved to suspend the employee without pay while also moving forward with actions to terminate him. The suspension became effective March 20.
According to the resolution presented at the March 19 meeting, the employee allegedly “engaged in misconduct by engaging in communications with a student which were inappropriate for the student-staff relationship.” The resolution also alleges that the employee misused district technology “for personal purposes not related to education or administration.”
The employee was placed on administrative leave on Jan. 22 for alleged misconduct with a minor. The district sent the employee a letter dated Feb. 8, asking him to a meeting on Feb. 14 to respond to the charges. He did not attend the meeting. The district then took measures to initiate the termination process.
“We’ve been in contact with our attorney and handled this each step of the way, following our guidelines,” said board president Mark Mason.
The board intends to continue pursuing the formal termination action unless the employee files a written demand for a hearing before the board.
The board also continued discussion regarding the future of the district’s athletic director position. At the February meeting, the board appointed Brandon Wright as interim athletic director starting March 1 for a 68-day contract.
Superintendent Chad Eisler informed the board that he had done research on neighboring districts and those of a similar size to Madison-Plains and found that the majority of districts employ a full-time athletic director who also has other duties.
“I am supportive of giving some extra duties to this person. I do think we do need to be careful, though, in not overloading them or overwhelming them,” Eisler said.
In some cases, athletic directors teach or act as dean of students, while others contribute on an administrative basis.
The board did not take formal action on the position.
Also at the March 19 meeting:
- Treasurer Todd Mustain reported that the district is in a “much better place” financially and that it should finish the school year better than it started. He estimated finishing the year with $2 million.
He also announced that the district received the Auditor of State Award based on the results of its recently completed Fiscal Year 2018 financial audit. The Ohio Auditor of State’s Office presents the award to public entities that demonstrate “excellence in financial reporting in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles and compliance with applicable laws.”
- Kim Rogers, transportation supervisor, reported that although the district has recently hired three new bus drivers, it remains understaffed in that department.
The next regular meeting of the Madison-Plains school board is at 7 p.m. April 16 in the board meeting room at the elementary building.