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Moving forward after shakeup in Cassadaga

November 21, 2013

SINCLAIRVILLE—Thomas Schmidt insists Cassadaga Valley Central School is moving forward from an administration shakeup last week....

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Nov-24-13 7:53 PM

Cap'n, we'll have to agree to disagree on this. I'm certain that the "buyout" pales in comparison to what they've paid him for the past few years. Again, the board knew him, knew his background and hired him anyway. This would be like hiring Bernie Madoff to handle your know before you start that it won't end well, yet you still do it. The payout, regardless of the size, is just a side effect of a bigger issue, an incompetent BOE.

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Nov-24-13 8:56 AM

What purpose does it serve to ignore the actual charges, more importantly, how much it cost taxpayers to send him packing? You want us to instead focus on the BOE's poor decision to hire him in the first place?

If it didn't cost what it did to get this guy to resign, then hopefully the BOE learned from its mistake and doesn't repeat it.

Again, I don't need to know what he did (or was accused of) to cause this action, nor do I necessarily care, but CVCS taxpayers have every right to know how much it cost. This does NOT violate confidentiality in any way. The BOE is simply hiding behind it to stall disclosing what'll likely turn out to be another poor decision, and they don't want to face the criticism. And that, my friend, is what this is all about!

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Nov-23-13 9:37 AM

Cap'n, I'm not inferring anything. That happened also. Everyone keeps focusing on whatever it is that happened when the real issue is the fact that they were hired in the first place when everyone knows, especially with regards to the Super, that they never should have been. Yes, when there is a contract you generally have to have a buyout and that *****, but it is what it is. And no, when it's a personnel issue I do not believe that the details are automatically released. Again, as I said, when poor decisions are made, you have to pay to take out the trash.

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Nov-22-13 4:42 PM

bear: so are you calling me out on my comments referring to "these 2 may have" & "it appears"?

Sure, I have no problem admitting I offered speculation in that post, if that's what's got your drawers in a knot, but don't sit there and imply that NOTHING happened! What forced the BOE to ask for Smith's resignation, as well as approve an indefinite PAID leave of absence for the lovely lady?

Wouldn't you agree, considering the BOE refuses to disclose any of the terms contained in the highly secretive separation agreement, that the "allegations" were of a serious nature, evidently warranting his immediate removal, but more importantly, NOT a criminal offense?

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Nov-22-13 9:12 AM

Cap'n, No, you said this: "bear: these 2 individuals may have had impressive credentials and very capable of performing their job duties for which they were hired. However, it appears these 2 may have violated clear codes of conduct that most schools demand.", to which I replied. I am not speaking of the interim personnel at all, only the poor decisions made by the board in hiring the previous administration.

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Nov-22-13 7:47 AM

Mr. Schmidt's history seems to be common community knowledge when multiple people are approached in the community by different individuals asking why would cvcs hire a guy who is just like the one they are paying big bucks to get rid of??? Either the boe didn't do their homework vetting Mr. Schmidt or they knew and hired him anyway. Either way, I'm thinking along the same lines as bad news bear; maybe its time for a new school board.

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Nov-22-13 5:33 AM

bear: I responded to hooray99's post, NOT "spouting about what ifs." I have NO KNOWLEDGE of the current interim Supt's history. My comment was meant as a slam against confidentiality clauses in general, and how districts can be intentionally deceived when hiring someone due to past matters being kept private. Sorry if you misunderstood my last post.

As far as I know, Schmidt is a well respected former supt who was asked to come out of retirement to temporarily help CVCS. Is this clear enough?

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Nov-21-13 9:28 PM

What about the teacher on paid leave? Will that be swept under the rug as well? This BOE is clueless.

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Nov-21-13 8:57 PM

Captain, if you don't have facts, don't spout about what if's. The Superintendent was WELL KNOWN to this school district, lives in the district and has relatives that work in the district. Everyone knew exactly what he was all about before he was hired. The principal, was not known, but I've heard there were many who questioned the hiring. Once again, it is the board that needs to answer for their poor judgement. When bad decisions are made, with foreseeable results, someone's going to have to pay the price to take out the trash. Maybe it's about time the longstanding members of the board were asked to step down too and clean house completely.

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Nov-21-13 8:47 PM

hooray99: the BOE @ CVCS may not have been aware of this "indiscretion", you know, confidentiality clauses help keep such "allegations" private.

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Nov-21-13 8:13 PM

Translation of Schmidts babble "we are trying to sweep this as far under the carpet as we can get it".

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Nov-21-13 6:22 PM

What is wrong with the cvcs boe? Why would they hire an interim superintendent who was also in an administrative position at a local school district and "enjoyed the company" of a district employee? They want the students to "learn their lessons" but they sure don't. Once the kids get wind of this it just tells them this behavior is approved and ok. Let's just make cvcs more of a laughing stock!

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Nov-21-13 4:37 PM

bear: these 2 individuals may have had impressive credentials and very capable of performing their job duties for which they were hired. However, it appears these 2 may have violated clear codes of conduct that most schools demand.

The confidentiality clause applies b/c disclosing the reason(s) why one was granted a paid leave and the other asked to resign would be prejudicial, since it may hinder his ability to find employment elsewhere, especially since such violations were never formally proven, merely alleged.

For crying out loud, this ain't the 1st time 2 co-workers were enjoying each other's company (if that's what was alleged). Rewarding them w/large sums of money to quietly go away is wrong any way you look at it.

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Nov-21-13 2:31 PM

I realize the deal is final and there's no recovering what was agreed to, but the BOE needs to come clean and admit what their decision cost taxpayers.

I don't know what irks me more, those who get rewarded for participating in or committing terminable offenses, or a BOE who illegally hides behind an inapplicable clause just so they can avoid anticipated criticism.

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Nov-21-13 2:17 PM

What relevance does NYS aid have to w/this? You're not implying that since the state's contribution is larger than local taxpayers, it therefore has the exclusive right to withhold whatever info it deems necessary?

"..with the assistance of lawyers and approved by the state"??? There's a real upstanding & trustworthy bunch. BTW, what's the name of the lawyers who allegedly said this? And who from the sate; Public Ed commish, the Gov, the AG, who?

"Get over it & move on?" That's what this BOE, and anyone else who may find themselves in a such a position someday, hopes the public will do. If they won't release this info, then I say file a FOI request.

WHENEVER taxpayer money is being spent, it MUST be publicly disclosed, PERIOD! Not you nor anyone else will convince me otherwise.

This ain't a friggin' national security issue for crying out loud.

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Nov-21-13 1:45 PM

The superintendent was a major league D bag and the principal had some significant issues. Put it this way, if your kitchen was filled with toxic waste, would you really care how much it cost to clean up the mess? What really needs to be answered for is the board's poor judgement in making these hires in the first place.

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Nov-21-13 10:19 AM

Dcronlg you sound like one of the people who might have something to cover up trying to get most of the people to go on to other things. The fact is that if people really wanted to know all they would have to do is start FOILing for the documents regarding this.

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Nov-21-13 10:04 AM

Captain -- no doubt the contract CVCS developed for upper school adminstration, with the assistance of lawyers and approved by the state, allows for confidentiality unless anything criminal went on.

So, no, its not illegal at all and they probably DO NOT have to release it.

Do you really believe, with the advice of counsel and the fact that CVCS receives 75% of its budget from the ever-controlling State Ed dept, that it would do something like this and not dot every "i" and cross every "t"???

Really...get over and move on -- the school has.

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Nov-21-13 9:38 AM

Schmidt's words sound like he's at a school pep rally, but does absolutely nothing to satisfy the concerns of HOW MUCH this decision COST district taxpayers.

Deliberately withholding HOW MUCH IT COST to settle with Smith & DiDo is clearly illegal! Confidentiality ONLY applies to the individual(s) with respect to any "alleged" offenses they may or may not have committed. It does NOT apply to HOW MUCH IT COST to settle. The taxpayers have every right to know! Anyone who believes otherwise is a complete fool.

By not being truthful & disclosing HOW MUCH IT COST for the decision the BOE made to settle this matter, it shows the BOE can't be trusted, causing the new Supt to be unfairly dragged down w/them.

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Nov-21-13 8:15 AM

Taxpayer's money and they can't know? Doesn't seem right. They need to keep the pressure on until they get answers.

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Nov-21-13 7:47 AM

I guess to make an article seem longer, you can repeat everything twice & still say nothing.

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