Correction: Board Votes on Southwick’s Employment

After an hour delay, proceedings got underway Monday related to the employment status of former High School Principal Karen Southwick. The Richmond Board of Education decided in March 2011 not to renew her contract for the 2011-2012 school year. The public meeting was in response to community complaints about a session that was not open to the public last fall. The “rehearing” stretched well into the early morning hours as one person after another testified before an audience of more than 100 citizens. Click to hear KMZU’s Kristie Cross talk with parent Jill Noble:

Jill Noble

Click to hear KMZU’s Chelsea Wade talk with High School business teacher Robin Cole:

Robin Cole

Click to hear KMZU’s Kristie Cross talk with former student Steven Smith:

Steven Smith

Click to hear KMZU’s Chelsea Wade talk with former student Whitney Martens:

Whitney Martens

The Board of Education was given the option to remain in open session following the hearing, but instead chose to go into a closed meeting. Their decision may not be known until Friday. The board would be required to release a record of the votes from the closed session after a mandatory 72 hour waiting period, under Missouri Statute 610.021. Proponents of the board’s decision to not renew Southwick’s contract declined to comment, and neither Southwick nor Superintendent Damon Kizzire wanted to make a statement, citing legal advice from their attorneys.