What smells funny?
It's good to be Timm Mackley. The erstwhile leader of Peters Township School District is sitting at home in Ohio, waiting to cash school district checks that will add up to about $170,000. All for NOT working. The district on Tuesday made public a "separation agreement" with Mackley, laying out the terms for the payoff. He needs to get his stuff out of his office by April 25, but his duties already have been divvied up. The question is why Mackley is leaving, more than two years before his contract with the district was supposed to expire. Mackley has no comment, and neither do members of the school board. The settlement agreement, which bars Mackley, board members and the district from expounding on the superintendent's departure, says Mackley is shuffling off because of his "strong desire to rejoin his family in Ohio, and to enable him to spend time with his son during his senior year or high school." Gee, don't you think an educated fella like Mackley would have realized when he signed his four-year deal with Peters Township that his son would be a high school senior in Ohio before that contract was up? Call me a skeptic, but I think there might be more to this story. The shame is, the people of Peters Township aren't getting the details. If Mackley committed offenses that warranted dismissal, or even if the board members just lost confidence in his being the right person to lead the district, that should have been discussed publicly, with appropriate action taken. And, yes, the district, one way or the other, was going to have to pay Mackley on his way out the door, or face an expensive lawsuit. But at least the public would know the reasons the board was willing to shell out $170,000. If Mackley simply wanted to go home to Ohio, he could have resigned, not entered into a "separation agreement." And if the only reason for his leaving is the one stated in the agreement, why in the world is there a need to gag the board members? Am I the only one who smells something fishy here? I know Peters Township is a wealthy area, but $170,000 is not exactly chump change - especially when you just got done paying nearly $500,000 to settle lawsuits filed by high school principal Tom Hajzus. And, by the way, the district reportedly is working to settle yet another lawsuit, this one by former high school football coach Keith Hartbauer against Hajzus and the district. The money flows. Do the taxpayers care?