Contract gives former superintendent 8 months with District, good reference

Contract gives former superintendent 8 months with District, good reference

LEXINGTON COUNTY, SC (WIS) - Less than a year after a superintendent-elect signs a contract with Lexington School District Two, he is reassigned, but not without a new employment contract covering all legal grounds.

Dr. James Siler started Sept. 15 as superintendent-elect for the District after superintendent Dr. Venus Holland announced her retirement. Siler was one of three finalists for the job. Holland is set to retire July 1.

On May 21, it was announced that Siler was reassigned as a special consultant in a press release that was mutually agreed on by Siler and the District.

The contract between Siler and the District for the superintendent job is now null and void, according to documents WIS obtained from a Freedom of Information Act request. His new contract names him as a special consultant and states he resigned as superintendent-elect for the District.

In the new position, Siler will do what the superintendent asks and consult with him on an as-needed basis, but Siler is not required to report daily to the District office.

Dr. William "Bill" James is now the interim superintendent.

Siler's employment ends Jan. 31, 2016, unless Siler wants an early contract termination. For the new position, Siler is being paid almost 42 percent – about $61,000 – of his $145,000 salary as superintendent-elect for the eight months remaining on his contract and receive health benefits. If Siler terminates his contract early, he will get a payment equal to the unused portion of his salary.

Also, in the contract, it states, "The District shall report Dr. Siler has met his responsibilities to the District in a professional fashion and in a competent fashion. The parties acknowledge Dr. Siler has not been terminated by the District, but has been reassigned to an area where his skills will be best utilized by the District."

Siler's personnel file showed no review was ever done on his job performance since he was hired last year.

The District is paying James, as the interim superintendent, $157,000 a year, plus $900 for monthly in-state travel expenses. Out-of-state travel expenses must be approved by the School Board for the District, his contract states. James will also receive benefits and the Board may approve to pay his dues and fees for membership into the local Rotary, chambers of commerce and professional associations.

James' contract ends June 15, 2016.

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