WUSD Board of Trustees votes not to renew superintendent contract with Emershaw
July 5, 2012 — The Board of Trustees for the Westwood Unified School District announced it would not be renewing the superintendent/ principal contract with Adele Emershaw.
The decision made during closed session Wednesday, June 27, was unanimous with four board members present.
They included David Bainbridge, Crystal Johnson, Dawn Lee and Mark Naseath. Trustee Shirley Barber was not at the meeting.
“We felt the decision was in the best interest of the school district,” said Bainbridge, board president.
He said the board would contact the Lassen County Office of Education to determine how to proceed with hiring a replacement and would perhaps select an interim superintendent to handle affairs in the meantime.
A vote on one action item had been postponed with the Wednesday evening meeting continued Thursday morning, June 28, in order to clarify a few facts.
At that meeting, Janet Garcia, the secretary/registrar at Westwood High School (WHS), expressed concern about the decision the board members had made.
“I was a big fan of Adele. I thought she brought us through a tough financial situation,” said Garcia.
She added she was concerned about the master class schedule for the high school because there was no one currently available with the skills to help create it.
Louise Biggs, the social studies teacher at WHS stated she had great respect for the school board for taking the reins back.
The only member of the board to provide insight into their decision-making was Lee. She said she had spoken with almost every employee within the school district and thought there was a lot of conflict that could not be resolved.
Although Emershaw did a great job with the financial part of the administration she thought it was in the best interest of the students to look for new leadership.
Emershaw was hired as the interim superintendent for the 2009-2010 school year. She signed a two-year contract and worked as the WUSD superintendent/principal for the 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 school years.
Prior to obtaining administrative credentials she worked as a schoolteacher at Fletcher Walker Elementary.
She has been with the WUSD since the 1995-1996 school year except for a one-year leave of absence when she taught in the Visalia Unified School District.
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