Madison

Madison Local School District Board of Education members (from left) Amy Walker, Jane McGinty, Jeff Meyers, John Luedy and Tim Wigton.

MADISON TOWNSHIP -- The Madison Comprehensive Schools Board of Education will meet Saturday at 8 a.m. to discuss future steps in acquiring a new acting superintendent.

Jeff Meyers, president of the school board, said several options could be discussed in executive session to weigh personnel matters, including using an administrator within the district to fill the position, hiring another acting superintendent from elsewhere, or waiting until a settlement occurs with Shelley Hilderbrand, the current superintendent who was placed on paid administrative leave in September, 2018.

Hilderbrand, who signed a three-year contract with the district in 2017, was placed on paid administrative leave after a number of controversial incidents and a public and student outcry.

Mrs. Hilderbrand.jpg

Madison superintendent Shelley Hildebrand. She was placed on paid administrative leave in September, 2018.

"She was not a good fit for our district," Meyers said. "There were allegations that she'd done something illegal or immoral, but we conducted an investigation and we found no evidence she'd done anything illegal."

In January, the board hired Lee Kaple as acting superintendent for the district. Kaple said then he wanted to help, but for one year only.

One of the options Meyers said is for the district to wait until Hilderbrand settles with the district, an issue lawyers for both sides have been working towards since she was removed from the office.

"We're working on it," the president said, "but we're not there yet."

Meyers said he could not discuss employee personnel matters, but no action is expected to be taken on Saturday.

Meyers said the district needs a superintendent to handle day-to-day business of the the district.

"The trouble with waiting is there's a time frame," Meyers said. "Most superintendents are hired by Aug. 1. The pool of good superintendents gets smaller and is limited. The other problem is they need a superintendent's license."

Meyers said there are administrators in the district who have the certificate needed to be an acting superintendent, adding hiring from within the district is also a possibility.

In April, the board brought in three separate companies who could help with the search of a new superintendent when the school is legally able to hire a new superintendent.

The three companies were a private company called Finding Leaders, who helps find leaders for different types of companies, Meyers said.

The Ohio School Board Associations also came to speak about its ability to help find a new district leader at Madison.

The Mid-Ohio Educational Service Center, who helped find Hilderbrand for the district, also presented.

The MOESC is a free service, the other two agencies cost between $8,500 and $14,000, according to Meyers.

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Staff Reporter

Noah Jones is host to The Open Mic Podcast -- available on Apple Podcasts! He is the crime, education and music reporter for Richland Source. He is a native of St. Louis, Missouri and a giant Cardinals fan.