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Connie Hathorn seeking retirement and rehiring as superintendent

Published: Tue, April 9, 2013 @ 12:05 a.m.



By Denise Dick



City schools Superintendent Connie Hathorn will retire and is seeking re-employment to the post.

The school board will conduct a public meeting on the issue of Hathorn’s proposed employment as a retiree at 5:30 p.m. June 4 the board offices, 20 W. Wood St.

At 5:30 p.m. June 25, the board will meet at the board offices to act on Hathorn’s proposed employment as superintendent after his retirement, according to a meeting notice sent Monday afternoon.

“Ohio Revised Code which requires such notice to be given not less than sixty (60) days before the Board’s employment of Superintendent Dr. Connie Hathorn as a re-employed retiree, and which requires the Board to hold a public meeting on the issue of the proposed employment,” the public notice reads.

Hathorn was hired as deputy superintendent in October 2010 and became superintendent in January 2011, replacing Wendy Webb, who retired. His contract, under which he earns about $132,000 annually, expires July 31, 2014.

Neither Hathorn nor Richard Atkinson, school board president, could be reached.

Hathorn is seeking to retire and be rehired after changes to the State Teacher Retirement System that include a provision that if members retire after July 1, they have to wait five years before receiving a 2 percent cost-of-living adjustment annually.

By retiring, Hathorn would be able to draw on his retirement and collect whatever the newly negotiated salary is.

If members retire before July 1, they won’t receive a cost-of-living adjustment for one year, but then will receive the 2 percent adjustments after that.

Both Debra Mettee, Springfield superintendent, and Scott Weingart, West Branch superintendent, retired and were rehired at decreased salaries this school year by their respective school boards.

The city school board has evaluated Hathorn, giving him a lower score than last year based largely on the fact that the district remains in “academic watch” status.

But based on preliminary data, city school and state officials expect the Youngstown district to move up next year. The state report-card system is changing, but if it were the same, officials have said they believe the district would hit “continuous improvement” on the 2012-13 state report card. That’s up one designation from the 2011-12 “academic watch” designation.

In evaluating the superintendent, the board gave Hathorn a 5 rating out of a possible 9.

Three board members — Rachel Hanni, Lock P. Beachum Sr. and Michael Murphy — didn’t sign the evaluation, saying they thought the superintendent’s rating should have been higher.

The members who did sign it — Atkinson, Marcia Haire-Ellis, Andrea Mahone and Brenda Kimble — said they based it largely on the fact that the district was in academic watch for a second year.

The board has approved Hathorn’s school restructuring plan to provide more student choice, improve academics and reduce costs. The Youngstown Schools Academic Distress Commission also adopted Hathorn’s plan, making it part of the district’s academic-recovery plan.


1glbtactivist(313 comments)posted 3 years ago

Hopefully the Board will not let this guy steal from the teachers' retirement system like he asked. He makes a great salary, he does not need to steal some from the struggling retirement system by lying and saying he is retiring when he is not. He should be charged with conspiracy to defraud the public.

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2redeye1(5511 comments)posted 3 years ago

If he wants to retire, let him . Don't rehire him !!

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3Millerh113(207 comments)posted 3 years ago

I don't know why Hathorn would want to continue working for this dysfunctional school board. Oh wait, it's salary plus retirement.$$$$

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4DSquared(1723 comments)posted 3 years ago

I think everyone is mistaken. It's really not about the money, it's really about loving the children! ( Uh, Sure dude, whatever you say!)

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5papa1(711 comments)posted 3 years ago

send this carpetbagging fool out of town and get someone in who truly loves Youngstown!!

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6Jerry(810 comments)posted 3 years ago

So he will get to retire, collect his full taxpayer funded pension, including taxpayer funded cost of living increases, and also continue to collect his full taxpayer funded salary. Further, this is a common-place practice across Ohio.

To be able to offer such gratuitously generous benefits, that no normal (non-government) worker could ever expect, one must assume that the public education system in Ohio is veritably flush with cash; that it has all the funding it could ever need. One can also conclude that the public education system in Ohio, having all the funds it could ever need, does not need one dime more of taxpayer support. What other conclusion could any rational person reach?

In 35 years as an eligible voter, I have voted in favor of every school tax levy on every ballot in every election. It is nice to know that the public education system in Ohio no longer needs my tax money. Obviously, I can now change my pattern of support to a pattern of resistance, and begin voting and working against further school tax levies whenever they are proposed.

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