Friends of Warren School, a community group with concerns about the Warren School Board's failure to renew the contract of administrative assistant Laurie Jones, will present petitions to the board next week, urging three board members to step down.

The group is also petitioning the Washington West Supervisory Union (WWSU) Executive Board for a vote of no confidence in WWSU superintendent Brigid Scheffert Nease and a nonrenewal of contract. In addition to the vote of no confidence in the superintendent, the petition calls for the Washington West Education Association to conduct a confidential and anonymous workplace climate survey among staff of the Washington West Supervisory Union regarding Superintendent Brigid Scheffert Nease.

The group is also raising questions about how meeting agendas were posted and how meeting agendas were warned leading up to the board's July 19 executive session vote not to renew Jones' contract. Jones worked for the school for 27 years.

Three board members, chair Michael Ketchel, Rob Rosen and Adam Greshin, voted not to renew the contract on June 19 and the petition asks that those three resign. There are electronic petitions as well as paper petitions at stores and public places throughout The Valley.

Over 100 upset community members addressed the board about their concerns at a July 7 school board meeting where the board read a prepared statement about their actions, noting that all of their decision making would be kept private for personnel reasons.

At the meeting, Ketchel told the group that Jones had accepted a settlement offer and that neither the board nor Jones would be discussing the terms of that offer. However, in response to questions from The Valley Reporter, Ketchel explained that Jones received the same package that three other retiring teachers were given at the end of the school year – one year's salary over two years and one month of the school's health insurance coverage. He said Jones' salary is about $43,000 annually. He said that the money for the settlement comes out of the general education fund where educators' salaries are paid.

The board meets Tuesday, July 21, at 7 p.m. {jcomments on}