Monroe Co. school board votes to buyout director of schools without cause

Local News

MONROE COUNTY, Tenn. (WATE) — In a 6-2 vote, Monroe County Schools board members approved a buyout agreement for the director of schools.

An agreement was signed by Dr. DeAnna McClendon at the end of February.

This is something that has also caught the attention of the NAACP.

“They would be progressive in hiring an African American woman and this woman comes in and does an excellent job. Now she’s got you out of debt. Now you’re on the rise and now you’re saying it’s time for you to go. We have a problem with that. We have a problem with that as the NAACP. We have a problem with that as people of color. We have a problem with that as women.”

NAACP Rev. Dr. Willa Estell

Her contract had been set to expire in June of 2023. The buyout that the school leaders approved amounts to around $100,000 per year.

It also specifies McClendon wouldn’t be able to sue the school system. McClendon addressed the media before Monday night’s vote, saying:

“I am full and feel overwhelmed to see the support that is here tonight. Because they care about children and no matter what happens on the inside tonight either way I know these people care about children and support children and the work that needs to be done to make Monroe County Schools one of the best in the state and the nation.”

DeAnna McClendon

So, why bring up a buyout agreement? At Monday night’s meeting, attorney Chris McCarty says there are no reprimands on file, and no reason for a buyout was given.

We should also note the deputy director of schools was named interim director of schools tonight.

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