HSD Emails Shine A Light On Why Former Superintendent Steve Price Was Fired
Emails members of the media requested, reveal concerns regarding unaccounted for funds, an unhappy school board and frustrated teachers.
The Hazelwood School District (HSD) did not formally announce why superintendent Steve Price was fired. It would only say it was a confidential personnel matter and the district was "moving in another direction."
Still people emailed wanting to know why, especially last week considering the district announced it came to a settlement agreement to pay for Price's salary until he found a new job, or until his signed contract with the district expires.
Copies of emails the St. Louis Post Dispatch requested via the Missouri Freedom of Information Law reveal turmoil in the days before Price was fired.
He faced questions from the HSD Board of Education about a substantial surplus of money in the budget, declining test scores and tensions with staff.
According to the emails, board member Desiree Whitlock emailed price more than a dozen issues the week before he was fired, regarding teachers feeling in danger of losing their jobs and money accountability.
The week after Price’s firing, a $9 million budget surplus was announced that averages a 5 percent raise for teachers and other employees. The surplus is due to expenditures coming in 4 percent under budget at the end of the 2011-12 school year, combined with more revenue than expected.