April 1, 2013

Principal won't fight to keep her job at Bonny Eagle High

The SAD 6 board votes 10-2 to accept Beth Schultz's resignation.

By Leslie Bridgers lbridgers@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

BUXTON – The principal of Bonny Eagle High School in Standish has decided to step down from her position this month instead of pursuing an appeal of a vote by the School Administrative District 6 board not to renew her contract.

On Monday night, the SAD 6 board of directors accepted the resignation of Beth Schultz, effective April 12. She will remain employed as a consultant to the district through June 30.

The vote was 10-2, with Stephen Heroux and Jacob Stoddard opposed. Paul Arsenault Jr. abstained without an explanation and he declined to say why after the meeting.

Schultz, who has been principal since 2008, will be paid her regular salary through June. Her salary for this school year was $94,000.

Superintendent Frank Sherburne wouldn't say whether she'll be working in a district building. He said he has not yet determined who will replace Schultz.

In February, the SAD 6 board voted unanimously not to renew Schultz's contract, effective at the end of June, when it would have expired. The board voted Monday night to annul that decision, which had been made at the recommendation of Sherburne.

Sherburne, who was hired in the fall of 2011, told the board in February he was not confident in Schultz's ability as a leader.

The discussion at the February meeting was held in public because Schultz waived her right to a confidential hearing. She also spoke to the board, defending her ability to lead, with examples of positive changes made to assessment, alternative and special education programs and the school schedule.

The vote on Monday night followed an executive session between the board and its attorney, Peter Cary. There was no discussion before the vote, and neither Schultz nor her attorney, Howard Reben, was at the meeting.

Schultz, Sherburne and the district released a joint statement after the vote, saying an agreement among them was reached after "(r)ecognizing that significant differences exist in their respective educational philosophies and vision of the future direction of Bonny Eagle High School."

After the vote in February, Schultz had 15 days to request that the school board provide reasons for its decision and to request a hearing, which she did on March 8. The board then had 30 days - or until April 6 - to hold the hearing.

"All parties expressly stated their desire to spare the District, the students of Bonny Eagle High School, and the community the distraction and expense of protracted further proceedings," the prepared statement said.

Schultz is one of four principals of area high schools to resign in recent months. The others were from Scarborough, South Portland and Biddeford.

 

Staff Writer Leslie Bridgers can be reached at 791-6364 or at

lbridgers@pressherald.com

 

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