School Committee in executive session to discuss terminating superintendent

At 9:30 a.m., the School Committee convened on Zoom and voted immediately to enter an executive (private) session to discuss Superintendent John Buckey’s early termination. The school district’s attorney Colby Brunt is in attendance. Committee member Brian Ota, who filed a discrimination complaint against Buckey, recused himself from the executive session.

School Committee Chair Sarah Fox seemingly did not mention whether the meeting would reconvene after the executive session, which would be a violation of the state open meeting law, G.L.c. 30A, § 21(b)(4). For the committee’s last executive session on July 21, the agenda mentioned that it would not be recovening. The agenda for today’s meeting did not mention that.

The School Committee adjourned its last meeting on Wednesday, July 26, after one minute, citing advice of counsel. More than 235 people had tuned in on Zoom, many hoping to read letters of support for Buckey. You can read some of those letters HERE.

Buckey and his attorney Mike Long say the School Committee has not given them any reason for Buckey’s firing. On June 6, the committee gave Buckey a “proficient” rating in his annual review. He has received that rating the last three years and was awarded a 2.5% raise last year. The School Committee extended his contract an extra two years in 2021.

“We have not been told the basis for this action,” said Long.

Fox has repeatedly declined to answer questions about what the committee is discussing or why they may want to fire Buckey.

For a timeline of events leading up to today’s meeting, click HERE.

This is a developing story. Stay with the Current for as new information comes in.

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Editor Leigh Blander is an experienced TV, radio and print journalist who has written hundreds of stories for local newspapers, including the Marblehead Reporter.

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