It took less than a week for the Johnstown-Monroe school board to hire and fire an interim superintendent. Victor Cardenzana, a retired superintendent, was named interim superintendent effective Nov. 18. On Nov. 23, a Saturday, the district's board of education called an emergency meeting, went into a private session and terminated his contract.
It took less than a week for the Johnstown-Monroe school board to hire and fire an interim superintendent.
Victor Cardenzana, a retired superintendent, was named interim superintendent effective Nov. 18. On Nov. 23, a Saturday, the district’s board of education called an emergency meeting, went into a private session and terminated his contract.
Cardenzana, 72, said the termination was not his choice. He thinks he was fired because he questioned district decisions made by board President Amy Ramey.
“I considered it my job to find out what was happening,” Cardenzana said yesterday. “My feeling is they wanted to run the district their way and not let me run the district.”
Ramey and other board members did not return calls yesterday.
Cardenzana was the Licking County district’s third superintendent this year. The last full-time superintendent retired in February, and the district hired Thomas Slater, another longtime superintendent, to serve as interim superintendent. Slater was injured in a car crash caused by a medical condition in September. He resigned in November to focus on his health, said Tammy Woods, the district’s treasurer.
About 1,600 students are enrolled in the district.
Cardenzana had been paid $330 per day as interim superintendent.
He said Ramey signed a contract with the Ohio School Boards Association for a full-time superintendent search without allowing the district board to vote on it. When he questioned her about it, he said, she got angry.
He said he also voiced concerns to Ramey after teachers at one of the district’s schools reported that she had been discussing a handicapped child’s educational needs with a friend. The child’s parents asked the teachers whether it was appropriate for Ramey to discuss those needs, Cardenzana said.
“And they were told no,” he said. “You can’t talk about those sort of things, particularly if the children are disabled and require specialized attention.”
Cardenzana said the district has been discussing plans to build new schools, and said he heard that the board was having a meeting about those plans outside its normally scheduled meetings. He thinks he should have been included in that meeting.
Again, he said, he questioned Ramey and the board.
By Nov. 23, the board had decided it wasn’t working out and fired him.
Nelson McCray, superintendent of the Licking County Educational Service Center, will fill in as interim superintendent until a full-time replacement can be hired, Woods said.