On Wednesday, in a 4-1 vote, the Vallejo City Unified School District named Antioch Unified School District Associate Superintendent Adam Clark as their new Superintend.
Clark received a 2-year contract with an annual base salary of $230,000 and will begin on September 18, 2017. He has been with the Antioch Unified School District for a year prior to serving at the Liberty Union High School District for the previous two years.
“I have enjoyed my time as a leader within the Antioch Unified School District. The students and community are what make Antioch such a special place to serve,” said Clark. “Also, the dedication of district office staff, school administrators, and site personnel is exemplary. There are many within the AUSD community who are committed to ensuring the best educational experience for our students on a daily basis and I will miss being a part of that team.”
During the Wednesday meeting, Vice President Burky Worel asked that the hiring of Clark be removed from the agenda so the public could review the contract. He made a motion to remove the item from the agenda but it died for a lack of a second.
“I guess you are probably wondering why I want to remove this, it has absolutely nothing to do with Dr. Clark. Dr. Clark was my first choice at the end of the first day. He was my first choice at the beginning of the second day, however, in my opinion this is not being done properly,” explained Worel. “Those of you who were here three-years ago when they extended the contract for Dr. Bishop, I spoke against it. Not against the contract like I am doing tonight, its just simply because the contract was not given to the public on Friday. That is the procedure we are supposed to follow.”
He further highlighted how he only received a copy of the contract 5-minutes into closed session.
“I really have not had a chance to read it,” said Worel. “Everybody talks about wanting to have transparency, well this contract should have gone out to the public Friday if we wanted to approve it tonight. That is what we do with every contract. I am not changing my position from three-years ago. I said this is not right. Now you can find the contract, the only people who can say anything about the contract are those that are here. The general public does not get to weigh in on the contract.”
Trustee Marianne Kearney Brown called the contract functionally the same as the last superintendent which worked well for the District.
Trustee Dr. Tony Ubalde stated that someone said we were breaking the rules and would like to hear from legal counsel if they were breaking any rules.
According to legal, the contract had to be approved at a public meeting which they were doing and the public only had to be given notice. It did not require the contract itself be disseminated to the public. The process was legally sound and not in violation.
Willy Mims spoke during public comments that he supported the selection of the new superintendent.
“In the time that I have worked with him, he has earned my respect and I have earned his respect,” said Mims. “You selected the right choice. I hope you will provide him with enough space and room to carry out programs. Implement new ones to ensure the academic success of all students in the District. Dr. Clark is a mild tempered man who is full of principals and integrity.”
Worel stated for a second time his objection was not with Dr. Clark, but with the procedure.
“I can guarantee you I will be his biggest supporter on this board, but procedure is producer and you don’t change it on a whim,” said Worel. “If you are going to follow them, follow all of them, don’t pick and choose the ones you want.”
Clark was appointed in a 4-1 vote who then made a brief statement.
“As the new superintendent I am thrilled to join the Vallejo City Unified School District community as we work collaborately to honor the past, celebrate the present, and plan for a successful future for our students, staff, schools and community,” said Clark. “I look forward to working with the governing board and the leadership team to establish a team oriented, professional relationship to support the District vision and mission. All of those associated with the Vallejo City School District, should be proud of its many accomplishments and strengths and I am grateful for the opportunity to lead.”