Public meeting set for Friday at noon to ratify superintendent’s departure agreement

The School Committee will meet this Friday at noon to take a public vote to ratify the $175,000 to end the tenure of Superintendent John Buckey. The meeting will be held in person at the Marblehead High School library and on Zoom. Here is the agenda.

Two attorneys had told the Marblehead Current that the School Committee needed to take such a vote to comply with the state’s Open Meeting Law.

Fox said she learned about the need for a public vote from the school district’s attorney Monday morning.

“I have zero concerns,” she said. “I have every bit of confidence in our attorney.”

After weeks of speculation and two private meetings, the School Committee released what Fox called a “joint statement” with Buckey on Aug. 2, announcing his agreement to resign. As part of the agreement, the district will pay him his normal salary through December, approximately $80,500. The School Committee will also pay Buckey the $94,350 specified in his contract for terminating it without cause, bringing the total to nearly $175,000.

When asked last week if the agreement required a public vote, Fox said no. She heard differently from her attorney Monday morning.

The School Committee has never revealed why it wanted to oust Buckey, according to his attorney. Fox has always declined to comment about the committee’s reasons.

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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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