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Clark Co. school board removing superintendent amid COVID-19 criticisms

Published: Apr. 21, 2021 at 5:31 PM EDT
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CLARK COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - Clark County Schools Superintendent Paul Christy is out from his job next school year. Monday night, the majority of the Board of Education voted not to renew his contract.

Superintendent Christy said he was disappointed during Monday night’s meeting and believes the decision all boiled down to his COVID-19 restrictions.

At the board meeting, three out of five members voted not to renew Christy’s contract.

“My biggest disappointment in 30 years was sitting in that room that night and looking at that board with the decision that was made that night with everything, not just what I had been through, but what our district had been through,” Superintendent Christy said.

The board evaluated the superintendent before the meeting. Among the criticisms was Christy’s communication during the time school went virtual.

“At one point, we were going week to week, but I think you got to understand in the time that we were doing that, that was the directive being given by the governor’s office, CDC and KDE,” Superintendent Christy said.

In a statement to our news partners at the Lexington Herald-Leader, board member Megan Hendricks said, “As it relates to the pandemic, I think the biggest issue was his refusal to communicate with the public or the Clark County School Board on the issue. I was disappointed by Mr. Christy’s failure to consistently communicate to the School Board or the public his re-opening plans, instead he insisted on providing his plans minutes before a scheduled meeting with no real opportunity for review or input.”

Board member Bill Taulbee disagrees. He said Christy’s work kept students and staff healthy, and believes he did the best with what information he had.

“The entire summer last year, Mr. Christy and his staff made sure all the teachers, during their time off, went through Google Classroom training to make sure they had the necessary skills to teach our kids,” Taulbee said.

“It’s hard to leave that, but I’ve been pleasantly surprised at the community support,” Superintendent Christy said.

Superintendent Christy told our Shelby Lofton if he had to do this whole year all over again, he wouldn’t change any decisions he made.

Two of the Clark County school board members who voted not to renew Christy’s contract started their term in January of this year. Taulbee said one of them hadn’t received training before the evaluation and vote was conducted.

“One board member has not even taken a superintendent evaluation training class, ethics class, finance class,” he said.

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