For The Daily Item
As a taxpayer in the Midd-West School District I am outraged and dumbfounded that we will be paying Dr. Wesley Knapp $70,682 through June 2014 to terminate his contract. The information as provided to the public by the school board directors, Dr. Knapp, and as reported by The Daily Item show that three scenarios are possible:
1. The board of directors feels that Dr. Knapp may have broken the law and/or committed illegal actions. If that is what the board truly believes, then they have the responsibility to contact law enforcement officials; and said officials should conduct an investigation into the board’s allegations. The board should not pay Dr. Knapp $70,682 to walk away from these possible allegations.
2. The board of directors feels that while Dr. Knapp did not commit any criminal activity; that his actions are not congruent with the district’s philosophy, goals, objectives and/or his contractual obligations. Again, why are the taxpayers responsible to pay $70,682 to Dr. Knapp if he did/could not live up the general terms and conditions of his contract when representing the district?
3. The board of directors wanted to get rid of Dr. Knapp and have put forth this story and buyout to meet that end. If this is the reason behind their actions; then the board should state it publicly.
In addition, the taxpayers will now have to foot the bill for a new superintendent. The cost of a new superintendent will be a salary of more than $100,000 not including benefits. Additional costs will be incurred by the district in the search and choice process for a new superintendent. That brings the total cost of this action close to $200,000! The school board directors have a responsibility to fully disclose to the public what Dr. Knapp’s actions were that were so egregious that it’s worth $200,000 to get rid of him. The board should also drag its feet as long as possible in hiring a new superintendent; so we can recoup some of the money wasted on the last one.
Steven March, Beaver Springs