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Board to buy out Bartlett's contract

April 23, 2001

Board to buy out Bartlett's contract



By TARA REILLY

tarar@herald-mail.com

Washington County Schools Superintendent Herman G. Bartlett agreed to a $35,000 buyout for the final year of his four-year contract, according to a press release from the Washington County Board of Education.

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Bartlett's salary would have been $105,000 for the 2001-2002 school year.

School Board President J. Herbert Hardin said that other than the $35,000, Bartlett would receive no pay or benefits.

"If any employee departs the Washington County Board of Education, he would not be covered by insurance," Hardin said. "In lieu of $105,000, we got off with $35,000, and most people would be pleased with that."

Bartlett resigned on Thursday amid intimidation allegations from current and former school system employees.

A private investigator from Gaithersburg, Md., confirmed last week that he was investigating the school system.

Bartlett's last day is June 30.

On Friday, The Herald-Mail requested under the Maryland Public Information Act any financial arrangements made between the School Board and Bartlett as a result of his resignation.

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The board released information about the buyout on Sunday.

Hardin said attorneys for the School Board and Bartlett agreed on the release of the financial arrangement.

He said the School Board was told by its attorney not to discuss other conditions of the agreement. If the board reveals any other details, it could face a lawsuit, he said.

"We have been advised to keep things to a minimum," Hardin said. "We're doing it by the books. We cannot afford a lawsuit."

John Hull, who has 47 years of experience in Washington County public schools, will be the liaison to the board while it begins the search for a new superintendent. He also is serving as acting deputy superintendent, a post that was vacated by Theresa Flak.

In addition to those vacancies, the board must also fill the director of human resources position. Phil Ray resigned from the post on April 11, he said. He said his resignation is not related to Bartlett's.

Bartlett has said he has not found another job.

Ray said he has no immediate career plans.

The School Board said in a written statement it will look for a new superintendent who will support and boost academic performance, teacher and staff morale, communication and community involvement.

"As we face a new and exciting future, we believe that together, Washington County public schools will be more successful than ever," the release stated.

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