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MDUSD appoints new administrators

By Theresa Harrington
Tuesday, August 16th, 2011 at 5:40 pm in Education, Mt. Diablo school district, Theresa Harrington.

At the June 28 Mt. Diablo school board meeting, Superintendent Steven Lawrence asked trustees for authorization to fill the following nine positions over the summer:

– one elementary school principal position,

– four Student Services Coordinators,

– two Necessary Small School administrator positions,

– Assistant Director of Categoricals and School Support, and

– Director English Learner Services.

“So, that candidates can be selected and under contract prior to August 1, for the above stated positions, it is requested that the Board authorize the Superintendent to enter into contracts with selected candidates,” the agenda report stated.

That evening, Lawrence announced that Valley View Middle School Vice Principal Joe Berry had resigned. He asked trustees to grant him the authority to also fill this position, as well as one high school vice principal position that remained unfilled at that time.

The board amended its motion to include the additional two positions, granting Lawrence authority to “enter into contracts for the above stated positions prior to the Aug. 9 board meeting.”

For the Aug. 9 board meeting, the agenda report stated: “On June 28, 2011, the Board gave the Superintendent authorization to enter into contracts with selected Administrative candidates prior to the August 9 Board meeting. The following candidates accepted positions and are being brought forward for introduction to the Board:”

However, Lawrence’s appointments included three positions that were not included in the list authorized by the board in June:

Two program specialists and one middle school vice principal.

Five of the positions filled were on the June list, while six of the originally listed positions remained unfilled.

Here’s a rundown of the appointments announced Aug. 9:

Principal, Valley View Middle School – Ean Ainsworth (former Riverview MS vice principal)

Administrator, Necessary Small High School – Rachelle Buckner

Administrator, Necessary Small High School/Vice Principal – Brook Penca

Program Specialist, Special Education – Berry Murray

Program Specialist/Extended Year, Special Education – Carolyn Patton

Principal, Sequoia Elementary School – David Franklin

Vice Principal, Middle School – Eric Wood

Vice Principal, Clayton Valley High School – Lorne Barbosa.

Here’s a video of the appointments, which includes more information about the backgrounds of the new administrators:

The following positions listed June 28 remain unfilled:

– four student services coordinators

– one director of English learner services

– one assistant director of categoricals and school support.

I asked Julie Braun-Martin, assistant superintendent of personnel services, why Lawrence appointed three positions that weren’t listed on the June 28 agenda.

“I believe that he had the authority to make appointments during the month of July and he outlined the ones that he knew about,” she said.

The district is still interviewing for the unfilled positions, she added.

Do you agree that the June 28 board action included positions not listed in the agenda report or motion?

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9 Responses to “MDUSD appoints new administrators”

  1. g Says:

    Shhhh…They won’t even notice…

  2. MDUSD Board Watcher Says:

    What a crock. Eberhart et. al. are a bunch of crooks.

    Eberhart fiddles as the MDUSD circles the drain.

  3. anon Says:

    The agenda item clearly states in several different places that the authority was given “for the above stated positions,” which included “one elementary school principal position, four Student Services Coordinators, two Necessary Small School administrator positions, Assistant Director of Categoricals and School Support, and Director English Learner Services.”

  4. anon Says:

    The agenda item also states “Add to the motion 1 high school VP and one middle school Principal.”

  5. Doctor J Says:

    Since the Board didn’t comment on it at the August 9 meeting, one can assume either they already knew about it or weren’t paying attention. If they knew about it, it had to be in some Brown Act violation communication. I guess the Board members can tell which it was.

  6. Doctor J Says:

    P.S. I raised this issue in June before the meeting that Lawrence would likely take action outside of the list — I forget who assured us that Lawrence was limited to the “list”. Lawrence just views the Board as a rubber stamp.

  7. Doctor J Says:

    Director of English Learner Services — not filled ? The Supt and Board was hot to trot 4 months ago after the Norm Gold report [$92k] and then hired him again [another $100k] to help put the plan together. The Supt got authority to hire this person over the summer and didn’t do it. As of yesterday, Theresa reports this position is unfilled. I checked last week and today on and there is no active job adverstisement for this position. What happened with this emergency appointment that supposedly was no cost to the district as they had grant funds ?

  8. Wendy Lack Says:


    Is there any chance that BANG will expand its online public employee compensation data base to include classified and certificated school personnel? This would be a great public service, since the pay plans and MOUs provide for various categories of pay “add-ons” that make it virtually impossible to ascertain salaries actually paid.

    A listing, by employee, for each classified and certificated employee’s W-2 earnings would be perfect — plus an estimated benefits “load” for each employee. Getting a data dump from the District’s payroll system shouldn’t be too tough.

    It would be welcome news to hear that this is already in the works for MDUSD.

  9. Theresa Harrington Says:

    Wendy, I believe the database already includes this. MDUSD’s classified and certificated salaries are included, with benefits broken out:

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