Is there a cloud of secrecy involving the Salt Lake City School District Board?

Local News

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – The Salt Lake City School Board announced Superintendent Lexi Cunningham and Business Administrator Janet Roberts abruptly resigned Tuesday and made it official Thursday.

During a quickly called meeting Salt Lake City School District Board President Tiffany Sandberg said, “Superintendent Cunningham and Business Administrator Roberts has resigned. We want to thank them for their service with the Salt Lake City School District.”

We’re hearing there was a vote behind closed doors during the last school board meeting on January 21st.

Yándary Z. Chatwin the Salt Lake City School District Executive Director of Communications and Community Relations said, “However since I am not privy to what happens during closed sessions, I don’t know whether a vote actually took place, and I’m not able to comment on that.”

When asked could they have violated law here? Chatwin tells ABC4 News “It’s possible, but again since I’m not in attendance at those closed sessions, I can’t comment on what may or may not have happened at that meeting.”

Michael Teter

We are also learning through West High’s former principal Ford White lawyer Michael Teter his client is on paid administrative leave until Friday.

“They notified him today that they intended to terminate him within 30-days,” said Teter.

In a statement Chatwin adds, “The District concluded its investigation and Mr. Ford White was made aware this afternoon and the employment status is, he is on administrative leave.”

“Clearly the district is in some disarray here. That they are losing a superintendent, a business administrator, and now the principle of a high school, all seemingly forced out,” Teter replied. “It is odd considering it is a public school district who needs to be representing the interest of the students and the teachers, and the principles, and the employees who work there, that they would want to shroud all this in secrecy.”

White’s attorney says he is processing and trying to deal with the news the best he can, and is thankful for the community and their words of support.

“It was touching for him, it lifted his spirits at a very difficult time, and it reinforced the idea that it’s a very complicated situation,” Teter said. “For those who know everything that happened know that it is not as easy and simple as the district has made it out to be. And, we hope that maybe in the future he will be able to tell a little more of this story.”

Parents say they want more transparency.

“It just makes me more curious because I’m concerned with, you know making sure we have the right people in positions at West High. And so, now without the superintendent, I want to make sure West High has the right people in our administration,” said parent and West High School Community Council Member Kathrine Stroud.

Salt Lake City School District Business Administrator Janet Roberts

After 27-years with the Salt Lake City School District Business Administrator Janet Roberts says in her resignation letter:

Board of Education:

Please accept this letter as my resignation from the Salt Lake City School District.

Sincerely,
Janet M. Roberts

Salt Lake City Superintendent Lexi Cunningham

As for Superintendent Cunningham, she says in her resignation letter:

For the past four years, I have enjoyed serving as Superintendent of the Salt Lake City School District. I have many fond memories and have been blessed to make many friends while working in SLCSD. While I will always treasure the memories and friendships that I have made, I now have the chance to pursue another educational opportunity. It is with mixed emotions that I will bid farewell to the Salt Lake City School District.
I am grateful for the opportunity to serve the students of our district and our community. I will continue to support the district, its teachers, and students. While I am leaving for the next adventure in my career, I will forever carry a piece of the Salt Lake City School District in my heart. I would like to thank you for the honor of serving the students, staff, and community of the Salt Lake City School District. Again, thank you for allowing me to grow personally and professionally throughout the past four years.

Chatwin adding “Their contracts end on June 30th, so they plan to continue until the end of their contract.”

The next school board meeting is expected to be on February 18th due to alleged scheduling conflicts on February 4th.

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