New Rochelle Superintendent Laura Feijoo, who withstood a significant group effort to oust her as quickly as she arrived final 12 months, has resigned and won’t return from medical depart, the Board of Training introduced Tuesday night time.
Her resignation is efficient instantly. Assistant Superintendent Alex Marrero will function performing superintendent for the remainder of the college 12 months.
“The Board of Training needs to thank Dr. Feijoo for her dedication to the district throughout a difficult college 12 months and her dedication to the scholars, workers and group throughout her tenure with the district,” Board of Training President Rachel Relkin stated.
“As a result of this can be a confidential personnel matter, the Board of Training, district and Dr. Feijoo may have no additional feedback concerning this matter,” Relkin stated.
Feijóo introduced on Aug. 27 that she could be taking medical leave to undergo surgery.
Relkin stated the board goals to rent a everlasting superintendent by July 1, 2021.
Longtime critics of Feijoo expressed hope that the district may be taught from this expertise.
“From the very starting, a big portion of our group knew that Dr. Feijoo was not outfitted to guide our numerous district, however our voices have been utterly ignored,” stated Minister Mark McLean, president of the New Rochelle NAACP.
“Now that this divisive period has come to an finish, I hope that our leaders have discovered a helpful lesson of how essential it’s to hearken to the group that they serve,” he stated.
Westchester County Legislator Damon Maher of New Rochelle stated the method of hiring Feijoo was “extremely flawed” and ended up with a candidate who didn’t perceive New Rochelle. Maher stated alleged points with the current college elections have been “the ultimate blow.”
“Clearly she didn’t personally deal with it, however she was liable for operating an election the place the ballots didn’t get out in time,” Maher stated. “She lied about it, and there have been so many ballots that weren’t counted or correctly secured. In the end the buck has to cease someplace.”
Feijoo was appointed superintendent on June 28, 2019, throughout a tumultuous time for the district. Two main incidents of student-on-student violence have been adopted by a grade-fixing scandal that left a number of main administrative positions empty. Feijoo was chosen by the college board to guide the district again to stability.
However controversy got here as an alternative. Feijoo was considered one of three plaintiffs in a $90 million reverse discrimination lawsuit towards her earlier employer, the New York Metropolis Division of Training, claiming that she and two different white ladies have been demoted by Chancellor Richard Carranza and changed by much less certified candidates of colour.
The backlash to her appointment was swift. Group members shaped a bunch referred to as the Collective, calling for Feijoo to step down or for the board to rescind its supply. The hassle to oust Feijoo went on previous her taking workplace on Nov. 1.
The varsity board had given Feijoo a four-year contract calling for her to be paid at the least $285,000 a 12 months. Group members referred to as for the board to purchase out her contract, saying her participation within the lawsuit proved she was the improper individual to guide a district as numerous as New Rochelle.
The board’s help for Feijoo by no means wavered. At one notably tense assembly final October, board member Julia Muggia Ochs stated the district had been in fragile state after its many troubles and wanted a superintendent in place.
“There have been very restricted selections, and we’ve got to watch out about this ship not sinking,” she stated.
After Feijoo took workplace on Nov. 1, considered one of her first strikes was the reassignment of longtime head soccer coach Lou DiRienzo days earlier than a playoff recreation, inflicting an uproar locally.
DiRienzo resigned a month later, and was later accused of abusing a student whereas educating at Lincoln Excessive College in Yonkers within the 1980s. Feijoo by no means publicly defined his reassignment, and “We help Coach D” indicators have been seen in New Rochelle storefronts for weeks after the very fact.
Lower than 4 months later, New Rochelle turned New York’s first coronavirus hotspot. Feijoo was criticized for her determination to maintain the colleges open till they have been shut down by Gov. Andrew Cuomo shortly earlier than he closed all of New York’s colleges.