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Three Huron school board members give perspectives

Alissa Widman Neese • Apr 2, 2013 at 1:00 PM

A community and school district severed by a year-long investigation could find closure tonight.

The Huron school board plans to either fire or rehire Fred Fox, the district’s ousted superintendent, at a 7:30 p.m. meeting in McCormick Junior High School’s auditorium.

Live coverage at sanduskyregister.com from McCormick school begins at 7 p.m. 

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The board tabled the decision at a similar meeting two weeks ago with a 3-2 vote. Board members Kevin Asher and John Caporini voted against the decision.

A crowd of 400 attended the heated gathering, eagerly anticipating a decision. About 600 viewed the meeting live as it happened at sanduskyregister.com. Debate went on for an hour, with 14 people voicing opinions on the matter, a majority against Fox.

Click here for an index of links to watch video clips of residents who spoke at the last school board meeting. 

The Register reached out to the board members Asher, Caporini, Tim Sowecke and Donna Green on Monday, to ask three questions concerning tonight’s meeting. Green did not return multiple phone messages seeking comment. 

Q: What are your expectations for the meeting tomorrow night?

Asher: I expect the board will reject the state referee’s recommendation and fire Fox. I’ve felt that for the last year. Though the superintendent has been found innocent, they will terminate him anyhow

Caporini: Because the state’s recommendation was so in favor of Fox, I’m hoping the board and others will see the best thing for the district is to reinstate him. I’m hoping and planning it will happen.

Sowecke: I have no expectations. I hope, like last meeting, the proceedings are very professional and respectful, but we’ll just have to wait and see what business comes before us.

Q: If the vote doesn’t go the way you want, how do you suggest the district moves forward?

Asher: I don’t know if it can. The consequences of not following the referee’s recommendation could be extremely serious for the school district. I’m sure the lawsuits will be flying after this decision.

Caporini: The operation of our district needs to take our full attention again. If the decision doesn’t go the way I hope, legal issues will arise, but we need to focus on what we can do to keep the district safe and the state funding we’ll be losing in the next few years.

Sowecke: It would be inappropriate to speculate how the vote will turn out, so I choose not to speculate on any outcome or how we might react to it.

Q: Looking past the issue of the superintendent, what do you consider the most pressing issue Huron Schools is facing today?

Asher: It’s clearly our budget. We’re in a year where we’ve lost nearly $2 million and we’re budgeted to lose $2.5 million next year. We need to concentrate on the budget and get this thing behind us. Our changes of passing a levy will realistically be slim now because of this.

Caporini: School districts are all governed by our financial picture. Unfortunately I don’t know all the answers of what the state will do. There are a lot of question marks out there.

Sowecke: In very general terms, the entire district must focus on day-to-day striving for excellence.

Click here for an index of links to video clips of residents who spoke at the last school board meeting. 

Click here to read past articles covering the firing of Fred Fox. 

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