Saturday, July 15, 2006

Circumventing state law, Weast is pushing for stealth resolution to renew his overpriced contract

Montgomery County Public Schools Superintendent Jerry Weast is quietly urging the Board of Education to pass a stealth resolution intended to renew his $350,000-a-year contract - before some of his backers leave the board.

Weast's tactic is intended to circumvent Maryland state law.

Specifically, Weast is encouraging the lame-duck school board to endorse a resolution at its July 18 meeting that praises him and urges "continuity."

The resolution would set a precedent that, in Weast's view, would pressure the to-be-elected school board to renew his contract, which expires early next year.

Weast loyalists on the board would like to renew his contract now, before they leave office. But that would be illegal, so they are trying to go around the law.

Under Maryland state law, school boards may not officially enter into contracts until February 1 of the year in which the contract expires. Weast's contract expires in March, 2007.

So we'll be watching the school board closely to see what it does on July 18.