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Retiring superintendent blasts BOE

Published: Wed, June 29, 2011 @ 12:06 a.m.

By Jordan Cohen



Retiring schools Superintendent Rocco Adduci has taken the unusual step of publicly blasting his board of education by calling its contract with incoming Superintendent Mark Robinson “outrageous.”

The superintendent’s comments are contained in an email to the five board members, which Adduci, who retires July 31, released to The Vindicator.

Robinson, whose base salary is $106,500, will receive a pay increase of $9,400 Sept. 1 after only one month on the job, raising his salary to $120,000.

The contract also contains additional increases totaling 11.5 percent should the state Legislature prohibit the board from paying Robinson’s employee contributions to the State Teachers Retirement System and Medicare.

Adduci predicts that the contract will set Robinson up for failure. Robinson officially takes charge Aug. 1.

“Everyone in the district will be taking CUTS and the superintendent was granted an OUTRAGEOUS raise,” the superintendent wrote to the board using capital letters for emphasis. “These are very disturbing decisions and they will have ominous consequences for our entire school district and community.”

Adduci accused the board of disrespecting him and his administrative team.

The superintendent said the impact of the board’s decision will place contract negotiations with the teachers and nonteaching employees “in a very difficult situation.”

Mary Ann McMahon, president of the teachers union, the 180-member Niles Classroom Teachers Association, said earlier that the contract and its perks are “a huge concern” to the teachers, whose contract expires Aug. 28.

Board members and Robinson have remained silent since questions arose about the contract. Messages requesting comment about Adduci’s criticisms Tuesday were not returned. Robinson, currently the superintendent of Ashland schools, also did not return a call.

Adduci, contacted by The Vindicator, said he is not worried about the board possibly taking action against him because of his decision to make his comments public.

“I have no control over what they do, positive or negative,” the retiring superintendent said. “I felt I needed to say what I did.”

The board’s next public meeting is 6 p.m. Thursday at Rhodes Elementary School.


1charms(228 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

BOEs need a lesson! Vote no on all school levies until they understand!

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2grand4dad(209 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

This is totally absurd and shows what is wrong with public employment. It is NOT the teachers and/or their unions. It is the ADMINISTRATIVE people, those that are not in the union like superintendents, etc., and the Board of Education. These are the ones that need to have a bill passed prohibiting them from what they do to pillage the public monies. This is EXACTLY why we need unions to stand up for the rights of the little guys, those just trying to make a living. Everyone on this board should lose their jobs immediately and the contract for the new superintendent should be null and void. Vote NO on any new levies in Niles. Vote to overturn SB5, it is just an attempt to crush the unions. The ones that need to be reined in are those at the top who are excluded from collective bargaining. That is who can't be trusted.

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3AnotherAverageCitizen(1176 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

But I keep hearing SB5 is not needed for NONUNION workers. There are rules in place for them. This is a prime example that if SB5 is needed, then SB5 is needed for ALL public workers.

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4grand4dad(209 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

That's the point. Abuses taking place in the public sector are mostly at the top which are the non union people. It is clear to me that government officials (board of education, etc.) have all the power they need right now to enforce pay cuts, keep benefits in line (no pick up of employee pension portions), etc., BUT THEY DON"T DO IT. These abuses need to stop. Abuses are NOT in the unions or their workers, these are just average people trying to make a living. SB5 is an attempt to make them scapegoats and divert attention away from where the real abuse is taking place. Governor K is another example. He could enforce pay cuts to his non union staff right now but is he?? NO! Lead by example Governor instead of trying to destroy unions and the middle class.

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5tkytown(43 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

If you poll all the school districts in the tri county area and see how many administrators and superintendents are double dipping (collecting a generous pension and still collecting additional public money while working) then you will understand the word OUTRAGEOUS, these greedy people are depriving young educators from moving on with their careers while collecting six figure compensation. It's time to stop this practice. The superintendent from Niles finally showed some courage and exposed the board's ineptness, Superintendents have tough jobs, but this contract is un called for.......

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6Realist(62 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago


I have asked this question many, many times on this website and I will try it again. Explain to me how a retire/rehire is costing the District more money? What does their pension have to do with costing the District more money?

Please explain.....

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7Miki(99 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

No Problem! Raise taxes!

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8300(573 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

This new superintendent is exactly what the proponents of SB5 are hoping to place in charge of a lot of schools. Someone who will exempt himself from any austerity measures, but has no problem targeting his teaching staff and low-balling them to the lowest salary possible.

What we'll see in another decade if SB5 is upheld, is that all those districts like Niles, Austintown, and other working-class districts in densely populated areas will start to see competition from Whitehat Charter schools. This will happen because people like this superintendent will have teacher morale so low that some parents (only the uninformed, but there are thousands of them) will start thinking about putting their kids in a for-profit charter school that promises a much better education (which is hardly ever true).

SB5 needs a "shark" in charge for it to work, and it looks like Niles just found one.

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9streetsmartt(127 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago


It IS the teachers and their union that's the problem.

Facts are that administrative pay scale (in large part) is tied to union raises, perks and bennies. That's why SB5 is needed.

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10300(573 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

Streetsmart, that's not true at all.

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11AnotherAverageCitizen(1176 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

Wrong, wrong wrong.
How else can I explain it. WRONG WRONG WRONG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Do not blame teachers union on this raise. Are the teachers getting the same $9,000 raise. NO But some how it is always the unions fault. AMAZING

300, If the man truely believed in saving money he would be accepting a pay CUT just like you want him to do to teachers. Are you saying he was hired to decrease moral, $120,000 to screw with people, and their lives. Wow sounds like a good job.

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12Realist(62 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago


I understand the concept of retire/rehire but the reason people get so upset is the phrase "double dipping". People are envious of a person who has worked for 30+ years decides to retire, collect on their pension and still work for a living. This has no affect on the District's financial status.

If the admin stays at the same district it is HIGHLY unlikely they would receive an increase in pay and if the admin moves to another district then what does it matter what they are getting paid.

For the rest of you, teachers and classified unions are a HUGE FACTOR of why many school districts are in the financial shape they are in. Roughly 80% of a school districts budgets are made up from salaries and benefits and only about 5%-9% of the 80% is from central office and administration. That leaves around 71% - 75% of the 80% for teachers and classified employees salaries and benefits. Open your eyes people!

Why shouldn't performance be factored in when determining layoffs, why shouldn't all public employees pay at least 15% of their health care, why shouldn't their be a merit based pay system instead of automatic longevity increases? Is SB5 that bad?

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13steelwagon(284 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

It sounds like the same old story time and time again.
Greed starts at the local level and runs all the way to the top.

Those in posistions of power and influence at the top are constantly reminding the average folks like most of us here the value and virtues of duty,sacrifice,dedication and hard work.

What they really mean is quite the opposite.
They're telling us to stay high minded and hungry while they drain the trough at the expense of everyone but themselves.

How on earth can a pay raise of $9,400 be reasonable or justified after a month on the job when working people are being layedoff ,taking pay cuts and concessions!!??

As for double dipping,...
There's another term for that "GREED"
If you worked long enough in your chosen career to retire and do so then get out and stay out.
Those of you who argue that the double dipper brings years of past experience and knowledge to the job are right .

However that person is at or past retierment age so how much longer will he/she be able to contribute ?
If an able and capable retiree still wants to work and be involved then why not volunteer ?

Why not allow the opportunity for a young person to work and build a career and enjoy the same opportunity you were given when you started out ?

Double dipping at best offers a few extended years of experience and service which is short term.
The practice forces our best educated to leave the area and that benefits no one here.

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14AnotherAverageCitizen(1176 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago


Personnel cost are high percentage of costs in most industries. That is the cost of doing business. Well unless we bring back and legalize sweatshops.

You want merit pay on teachers but the superintentent is given a raise before he even starts his position.

But yet so many think sb5 will save Ohio. NOT

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15AnotherAverageCitizen(1176 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

maybe we better ask Charms if Mark Robinson is a friend of his. If so, the Marks pay will be well justified.

Just kidding Charms....

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16Realist(62 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago


I agree that the superintendent getting a raise a month in is a little ridiculous.

Personnel Costs are a part of doing business but in the private sector the employer has the right to determine wages and layoffs as needed. Also when costs get to high a private sector company will raise their prices, a school district can not do that. They have to cut costs (personnel) or raise revenue (tax levies), and we see that people do not enjoy option B.

SB5 might be a little over the edge, something needs to be done to help the school boards and administration control these costs.


Who gave you the right to determine when someone is unable to work anymore. You call these people greedy but I call you envious.

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17DwightK(1378 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

HaHaHa...who was the BOE negotiator who thought $120,000 a year was a good deal? I have some paper to sell them

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18AnotherAverageCitizen(1176 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago


So is it OK for business to raise prices? We the people do not enjoy that either, but we have no choice. I still need gas and electric, food and milk.

""SB5 might be a little over the edge"".. Well I think it is WAY over the edge. All sb5 is to do is destroy public unions. If everyone was truely interested in saving money these raises of $9,400 WOULD NOT TAKE PLACE. I keep hearing rules and steps are in place to restrict nonunion employees raises and benefits. Too bad no body uses them. But if sb5 passed the union employees would feel it right away.

SB5 will be turned down. 1.3 million signatures.

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19Bigben(1996 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

The superintendents are the ones with the cushy coffee drinking jobs. While the teachers are working these arrogant do nothings sit in their offices hiding behind paper work. Teachers can teach under a tree.

These should be the ones to go we don't need 4 to 7 administrators for a building.The big cheese superintendent in the meantime goes on vacations to Columbus paid for by you.Lets do some real restructuring and shed some of these over paid and obnoxious people who can't make it in the classroom.

There are some exceptions in the City where they earn their money but Mahoning County is full of these worthless boobs who couldn't find their axx with both hands.We would save hundreds of thousands of dollars.

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20grand4dad(209 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

It is NOT the unions that are the problem. The proponents of SB5 want you to believe that but it's not true. What I see is that the tools are in place RIGHT NOW for administrators to cut salaries/bennies for themselves and other non-union people. BUT THEY WON"T DO IT. If they would show some leadership (and that includes our Governor) and start taking pay cuts themselves and enforcing these cuts to the non-union folks, they would have some good bargaining power when going to the unions to ask for concessions. This board of education has made it clear that even if SB5 goes into effect, they will IGNORE it for this superintendent (and probably all their administrative staff) by giving him the extra money in salary to make up for no longer being able to pick up his employee share of his pension contribution. THIS IS SICKENING. What teachers in our area have their portion of the pension contribution picked up?? None that I know of. All SB5 is attempting to do is force all the middle class workers to take cuts at the expense of the elite. THE RICH KEEP GETTING RICHER. This is not right. steelwagon, you are right on the money. The double dipping practice needs to stop, let's give opportunities to the new young blood and try to keep them from leaving this area.

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21taxpayer1001(274 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

Lol cool....I thought the same thing when I read this

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22SickofJimbo(140 comments)posted 4 years, 1 month ago

All superintendents. Over-rate Over-paid

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