(Editor’s Note: The meeting time is 4:45 PM, not 5PM as earlier reported.)
Yes, we went through this last week. Ed Newsome survived the direct threat to his job during an afternoon and evening of closed Danville School Board sessions. Everything is now coming together and it’s looking like he will part ways with Danville Public Schools on Monday night.
Today, the Danville School Board scheduled a special meeting on Monday, June 30th at 4:45PM.
SouthsideCentral is now extremely confident that an agreement has been reached with Superintendent Ed Newsome that he will not be Superintendent in the coming school year.
Here’s a Big Board of facts, thoughts and opinions about this…
- June 30th is the last day for board members Rebecca Bolton and George Wilson. This is the absolute last chance for the current version of the school board to make any agreements.
- Steven Gould and Sharon Dones have not been informed of anything by the current school board. This is shameful as I’ve stated early. The first shameful part is to be making a big school system decision as a partial lame-duck board. The second shameful part is to not at least include the incoming board members on this decision-making process (even in just a briefing).
- Ed Newsome is a very smart man and has retained Glenn Berger, one of the best attorneys in the region. I had a strong feeling that the last 80-minute closed session involved negotiating a buyout number for Newsome. I had hopes that since no agreement came out of that session, the issue was dead for a while. Apparently, that’s not the case.
- Yes, I could be totally wrong on this. However, the only other “personnel matter” of importance pending is the naming of a principal for George Washington High School and there’s absolutely no need for a closed session on the last day of this current school board for this.
- If this happens in the way that I’m thinking it will, this would be a horrible decision on many angles. We’ve got the lame-duck board angle, which I covered above. We’ve got the “causing chaos in the system” angle, because a school system without a known superintendent will flounder around as a new school year starts. Then, we’ve got the most important angle of them all. Money. Buying out Ed Newsome will not be cheap. The search for a new superintendent will not be cheap. The Danville Public School system does not need these additional costs when they’re already stretching their budget as thin as can be. There are already 70 vacancies for teachers in the Danville school system and likely to be more.
- If the school board plays this correctly on their end, there will be no public comment session. That’s shameful, but I’m sure that will happen to insulate themselves from the deserved all-community outrage.
- Let me make this perfectly clear. This is not a racial issue. This is action from a school board that has now shown themselves to be vengeful and incompetent stewards of an education system that is a key to the City of Danville’s efforts to recruit industries and jobs to this area. That being said, I’m not indicting every member of the school board, but it’s sad that they are one entity when it comes to making decisions. The black community should have howls of outrage over this. The white community (and every other community) should be howling just as much.
Ed Newsome does not deserve to be “fired” or “bought out” or even “leave on a mutual agreement”. Any school superintendent needs more than one year to fit in and implement changes to correct the mess he inherited when he started the job.
I hope I’m wrong, but I feel that the Danville School Board is about to make a horrible decision that will adversely affect a school system that is already suffering from major problems. SouthsideCentral will be LIVE! at Monday’s meeting and we will update the website with anything else that we find out.