Facebook Page Reveals School Board Improprieties

   Written by on January 25, 2018 at 11:23 am

By Averett Jones
Southside Messenger Editor

The Facebook page (on the front of this week’s Messenger) belongs to new School Board member Teresa Dunaway. It is an invitation only page which means members have to be invited to be a member. The page was started In May of 2017, has 383 members including all five school board members who voted to non-renew Charlotte Superintendent Nancy Leonard’s contract.

Citizens are concerned because any time more than two board members meet (including electronically) constitutes a meeting, minutes must be kept and the public must be notified of the meeting in advance. Other citizens are concerned at the lack of African Americans in the group.

Prior to last week the page included discussions regarding the school system and school issues. Starting this week, the page was sanitized.

The Messenger has contacted many citizens regarding non-renewal of Leonard’s contract.

The number one concern is that Leonard does not live in Charlotte County.  According to Leonard her home is two tenths of a mile (roughly 1100 feet) from the Charlotte County line. Leonard stated she offered to move to Charlotte but agreed to a lower salary if she didn’t have to move. The school board at that time agreed.

Concern Two – According to some callers Leonard is paid too much and gets too many benefits.

Previous Charlotte superintendent Melody Hackney was paid $121,632.00 annually, full family medical, dental, vision insurance and employee share of VRS. Hackney was also provided with a county vehicle.

Leonard’s contract includes standard benefits for full time school employees with the addition of health coverage for Leonard. She is also paid a transportation stipend for using her own vehicle.  Her current salary is $108,000 annually with individual health insurance and a stipend of $500.00 per month for providing her own transportation.

This is the second lowest for the 12 schools in Region 8 with Lunenburg paying $100,000 per year with full family health insurance making the two comparable.
Appomattox, who ties Charlotte for top student achievement and test scores in District 8, pays their superintendent $137,359 with full family health insurance.

Of the 128 school systems in Virginia only 12 pay superintendents less than Charlotte County is paying Leonard and most of those are in the western super rural counties.

Additionally, there is a statewide shortage of teachers, administrators and superintendents that will complicate the replacement process.

Leave a Reply