Cliff Williams (courtesy photo)

Six weeks after the Riley County USD 378 school board suspended its superintendent, the board moved Tuesday to fire Cliff Williams on a 4-2 vote. 

Board President Samantha Brown says a majority of the board felt Williams’ contract exceeded Kansas statute 72-1134 which states “a school board shall appoint a superintendent for a term of not more than three years.” Williams received an extension to his three year contract in December prior to the board turning over, on a 5-0 vote. 

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Two of the current board members, Brown and James Greer, did not attend the December meeting and two new board members, Jarred Anderes and Shane Eslit replaced Julie Thiele and Chris White, flipping the majority of political support for Williams in the process.

Board members Nathan Mead and Justin Ricketts opposed Tuesday’s motion to terminate Williams’ contract, which followed 45 minutes of executive sessions. 

Following the decision, the board tabled a motion to offer a supplemental contract for interim superintendent Erin Flair for the remainder of the school year. Ricketts expressed his desire for transparency with any future contract discussions.

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The board hired Hoover Law Firm, of Junction City, to carry out negotiations with Mr. Williams. Terms of the negotiations weren’t disclosed.

The board will take up that discussion at its March 4 meeting.

KMAN reached out to Williams following Tuesday’s meeting seeking comment, but he has so far not responded.

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