Huron board restores Fox's pay; suspension stands

Embattled Huron Schools superindendent Fred Fox will be on paid leave as the investigation into his alleged misconduct continues.
Melissa Topey
Jun 25, 2012

Embattled Huron Schools superindendent Fred Fox will be on paid leave as the investigation into his alleged misconduct continues.

Fox was suspended without pay June 19 after a 3-2 vote by the Huron school board, which based its decision largely on a 50-page investigative report by the law firm McGown & Markling. (To review the report, click HERE.)

“Under advisement of legal counsel, suspending him without pay was not the best decision to preserve his rights to due process," board president Scott Slocum said Monday night. "We are backing up and trying to do right."

The board still intends to move foward with termination proceedings.

For more on what happened at Monday night's board meeting, pick up a copy of Tuesday's Register.

 

Comments

Tmm

mikel read through the evidence.  he did much more than reading email.  he is a public employee who conducted an affair during the time he was being paid for. 

Retiree

Here comes his friends back, the ones that ran for cover when the report came out. The want- a- be lawyers, doughnut shop want-a- be,breath of life, Gardenman,etc.. It won't be long before you run for cover again. Read the "Ohio Ethics Laws" for a school superintedent. You can look them up on you computer.

It will give you a head start on running for cover.

worddrow811

@retiree, I am not a friend of Fred Fox as I've never met the man so stop making assumptions on what you think you know. That is exactly my point here, too!  Everyone jumped to conclusions without knowing any facts and the school board should be able to handle their own mess and if not then get rid of them, Fred Fox and find new people, do you want the job?

donutshopguy

 Why do we have to go through all this dancing.  Sorry, I forgot we need to pay high priced lawyers to resolve our issues.

Mr. Fox made hugh mistakes in judgement. The school board made little mistakes in judgement. All made mistakes.

After hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees spend by both parts Mr. Fox will walk away with his pension, a portion of his salary from his contract and a gag order that neither party can discuss this subject with the public.

Winners:   Lawyers

Losers:    Mr. Fox's family, Mrs. McNulty's family.

 

To the losers:  If this situation causes your marriage to end in divorce make sure you receive half of their pension in the settlement.

donutshopguy

 With only 32 more posts needed, I predict the top four articles with comments will involve the "Fox Fiasco".

Sex, money, and scandal.  You couldn't write fiction this good.

BAM272

Fox needs to resign. plain and simple. was he at the meeting last night?

Kilroy

 

The dumbing-down of the moral code is because the punishments do not fit the crimes, people.

The lawyers,  judges and juries have the ability to do something and don't. In case no one has noticed, the crimes and misdemeanors are based on degrees, first, second and felony,, etc. and therein lies the problem.

 

@ breath of life...Why do people blame our judges for these moral code violations, when this is something that should be learned and taught while growing up from the parents?  If anything blame the parents for allowing it to be okay to lie,cheat,and steal('because nobody is perfect') not the judges. jeepers!!!

 

 

 

worddrow811

@ kilroy, how does one teach the children when some parents, these days, are criminals and their parents had no moral code? The last time that I checked, if one goes before a judge, his ruling is the deciding factor. Letting criminals off with a slap on the wrist, is part of the problem.

Life teaches that the choices we make dictate the life we lead. Fred Fox made his choices and he is living with the consequences, just as the school board is doing in their decision to make a preemptive strike.

Nothing will change until we change the thinking that it's no big deal! It may not be a big thing to some, but it is to others.

If no one sees the crime committed, did the crime happen?  The moral code is inside us and those who are honest do not have to justify their behavior, their reputations preceed them, aka Tanny Von Thron.

Tsu Dho Nimh

Wiredmama

Breaking the Sushine Law is not as big as a deal as some people believe.  The fine, if any, is $500 , the actions taken are void and the court can issue an injunction to force the board or committee to correct the action  However, if it is corrected at another meeting (righting the wrong), there is nothing to fine and the court will not get involved.  Not my take, it is what the Sunshine law states.  Google it. So in the scheme of what is going on, it's pretty minor.  It appears that Mr. Caporini is grasping at straws because he didn't share one bit of info that satisfied the majority of those in attendence last night of why he is against suspending Mr. Fox while the process is under investigation.  The vote was 3-2. Last week he voted to "issue a declaration of no wrong doing".  It's in the board minutes.

Darkhorse

No doubt Fox is finished.  There will be a settlement, but the question is how much will the school have to fork over to get rid of him. He will walk away clean with just a smack on the wrist and don't do it again where ever you land at your next job. Due to the settlement nature, you keep passing the employee on quietly to some other school system as long as he is not at Huron. 

mikel

tmm - i don't dispute what he did.  i am just saying that everyone has taken advantage of their employer at one point or another.  doesn't matter if a person works in the private or public sector.  stealing is stealing and at one point or another everyone has done it.

Tmm

Mikel i agree with you that many people take advantage of their employer.  Being the Superintendant of a public school system does raise the stakes a bit though don't you think?  Where's the leadership of this man?  Arn't educators supposed to show those whom they educate what being a good role model is about?  Or in this case was it all about getting the job, accomplishing a few goals such as securing the Kalahari Field, then sitting back and taking advantage of your possition above all the other "underlings" below you?  How long would this have gone on?  Was/is Fred Fox close to retirement or would he have dupped the school system for the next decade or so?

PS
Tsu Dho Nimh

Candlemaker

Like your comment and agree!

Someone questions if Huron has an employee handbook that addresses what is expected/what is unacceptable.  I don't know the answer to that but Candlemaker is correct when sharing that Mr. Fox should be aware of "professional requirements for educators within the Ohio Department of Education and the Ohio Revised Code."  Educators are expected to know this and in order to obtain a superintendents license, he would have taken course work in this area.  He has also sat in conferences/workshops that have focused on this topic along with other administrators in his district and surrounding districts.  Ignorance of what ODE and the RC is not a defense.

I stand by my comment that Mr. Fox is on the clock from 7-4.  He is on call the remaining hours. Pages of personal email (55 pages), either on company equipment or personal accounts during THESE hours is not acceptable.  Leaving his office and conducting a personal affair with a woman during THESE hours is not acceptable. ODE has suspended licenses over 1 or 2 personal emails using district equipment. It is public record and can be found on the ODE webiste through the SAFE account link. His misuse, especially the nature of the emails, may be enough to revoke his license. 

Public employees are held to a higher standard than private sector employees!

Sitting In The ...

Well my goodness what a great idea....wait until after the investigation done then proceed from there. Because the last thing you would want is the voters thinking you don't have a clue what your doing. Boy that sure didn't blow up in your face...So they spent taxpayer money to hire a law firm then when this unbias report came in they said "oh we got him now" then the State steps in and says "We'll investigate this " even then the Elite Huronites said "We don't need your help" then fire him before the investigation complete then a week later you reinstate him but add he under suspension with pay....YOU CAN'T MAKE THIS STUFF UP HAHAHAHAHA.  

BAM272

@mikel

you are incorrect.  not everyone takes advantage of their employer and not everyone steals.  additionally, not everyone sends personal email from their work email.  why are you trying to justify those actions?

BAM272

Sandusky Register: can you please obtain the public commment portion of the school board meeeting?

Tsu Dho Nimh

Just want to add to the meeting minutes:

Mr. Sowecke immediately stated that he did not meet Mr. Markling at the meeting and that the law firm was not  linked to the meeting.  He shared that during Mr. Asher's reading of his statement.  Feel this is important for those of you who were not in attendance to know.  He formally stated that again after Mr. Asher was finished.

Pennywise

 Every last one of them knew damn well what was going on. The way I see it is all of them had something to do with it and every last one of them should be fired. The rest of the board just sat on this till they got mad at the whole board should be ashamed. 

fica

Isn't the state of Ohio an at will state? Although I would prefer a reason for someone being fired, do they really need one?

Swamp Fox

Most government employment contracts for administers has a morals clause if Fox has one, he is toast....... As soon as Fox cuts his deal, watch the rest of his buddies jump ship and be more than willing to talk to save their sorry a&*es........ Fox a great example for our children, at least he has something in common with Bill Clinton......

Tsu Dho Nimh

Paying  a fine under the Sunshine Law is not sweeping it under the rug.  It is financial penalty to remind boards and committees what is expected/required of them.  Look at my previous post.  I shared that anything that was decided is void and that the courts can issue an injunction to correct the situation.  There is no evidence that the Sunshine Law was violated beyond a doubt (I'm not saying it wasn't ,either). What the board did last night was replaced last week's motion to suspend without pay and to suspend with pay.  They then voted on this in the public session.  Voting on the new motion in public corrected the wrong doing, assuming there was a wrong doing.  Voting for suspension with pay assured Mr. Fox's due process.  The board also stated that Mr. Fox was not denied his pay or benefits during the time of June 19 to last night's meeting.

My point, and the point of others, is that violating the Sunshine Law isn't as costly to the district as Mr. Caporini is suggesting.  The Sunshine Law allows lay people, who are willing to serve on such boards, the opportunity to fix mistakes.  They are expected to know a lot of legal information without in depth training. 

Informed

 And Tsu, whether he was suspended with or without pay has nothing to do with Sunshine Laws.  So I don't see where wire is getting that.

Tsu Dho Nimh

Informed

Wired shared this on a previous post:

"I am on the outside looking in.  I have no vested interest in Huron. I am just an observer"

I seriously doubt that Wired was at the board meeting.  But two attorneys, speaking as tax paying citizens of the school district, shared their interpretation of the Sunshine Law, its purpose, and the board taking corrective action.  One even supported that violation of the Sunshine Law is not the level of offense that Mr. Caporini is suggesting. 

If someone was not there the entire meeting and listened to what was said, then please don't question the knowledge of others.

 

Tsu Dho Nimh

Informed

Agree!!!!  The Sunshine Law is about HOW boards and committees meet not about what they decide.  If they meet illegally, then the decisions from that meeting are void.  Hopefully some people will get this concept.  The question at hand last night was if the board was incorrect when they voted in EXECUTIVE session on the 19th instead of in GENERAL session.  They recinded the previous action with the new action and voted in GENERAL session last evening, thus correcting the possible mistake. No fine involved and no court will issue and injuction because the action has been correct.  Plain and simple.

donutshopguy

 Speaking of jumping the ship.

My understanding is the high school principal and athletic director have left the school system and have taken other jobs outside the district.

Informed

 Um, donut, yeah the hs school principal is old news.  He submitted his resignation and accepted a position with Northpoint ESC almost two months ago. They have already hired a new one.  Unfortunately, he is buddies with the assistant prinicipal going back to Sandusky school system.  More "good old boys" stuff.  Just what we need!

Have heard nothing about the AD.  That may be true.  If so, that is new news.

SRegister

Where did the AD and principal go to?

Informed

 The HS principal accepted a job with Northpoint ESC.

donutshopguy

 AD went to Avon Lake as Asst. Principal.

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