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Thursday, February 21 , 2019, 12:54 am | Fair 47º


Former Carpinteria Schools Superintendent Getting Year’s Pay After Contract Terminated

Former Carpinteria schools superintendent Micheline Miglis will be paid a full year’s salary after leaving the district, according to the separation agreement reached with the board of education.

Miglis was hired in mid-2015, and served one year as superintendent of the Carpinteria Unified School District.

On Aug. 22, the day before classes started, the board held a closed session meeting with Miglis and decided to part ways.

“Board and Miglis acknowledge that significant differences have arisen between them in style, philosophy and vision for the district, and as such they mutually agree to the termination of Miglis’ employment contract pursuant to the terms and conditions herein set forth,” states the separation agreement, which Noozhawk obtained through a California Public Records Act request.

The agreement intended to settle all issues and disputes so neither party would be at further risk of legal exposure.

Miglis will be paid her monthly salary for 12 months and her health benefits will continue until mid-2018, which is the end of her three-year employment contract with the district, or whenever she gets benefits from another job.

Micheline Miglis
Micheline Miglis

According to her employment contract, her annual salary is $172,000.

She was also paid for any unused vacation time but will not receive benefits, such as accruing more vacation and sick time, getting life insurance premiums, a district-paid telephone and computer.

In the agreement, Miglis agrees not to initiate any litigation against the board or district in the future, unless it’s related to a breach of the separation agreement.

All parties agreed to keep the terms and conditions of the agreement private, except to comply with the law such as the Public Records Act.

The specific reasons Miglis’ contract was terminated may never come out, at least officially.

Miglis could be terminated at any time without cause, according to her employment contract, as long as she was paid her salary for the remainder of the 3-year contract or 12 months, whichever was less.

Details were scarce after the meeting, and members of the Carpinteria schools community were frustrated with the sudden, confidential decision.

Miglis was temporarily replaced by former Santa Barbara school superintendent Brian Sarvis, who took over immediately after the agreement was signed.

“It was not an easy decision but it was unanimous,” board president Andy Sheaffer old Noozhawk at the time.

Carpinteria school board members wrote a letter to the community, posted on the district's website, reiterating the fact that details would remain confidential.

“The board would like to acknowledge the passionate input that we have received regarding this matter. It is evident that we have a community of students, faculty, parents, and neighbors that care deeply about our schools and want the best. 

“While it may be very frustrating for all to not know the details of this immediate and sudden change, matters such as this that deal with the circumstances of employees is confidential and just like we would respect the confidentiality of any student, faculty, or parent matter, this situation is equally protected.

"The board will not share the details that led to this outcome with the public as we continue to follow the law.    

“We are fully confident that our administrative staff, both at the site level and district office, will continue to provide high-quality support and continue to lead our district towards the vision of excellence. We must all agree that in the best interest of our students, this matter should stay at the adult level and not spill into the learning environment for our students. Only those in the classrooms have that power and we have confidence that they will act and speak responsibly. 

“In the end, only the five board members and Ms. Miglis know the true details of this matter, and it will remain that way on our part. Speculating or making assumptions about personal agendas or malice intent does not make this situation any easier but only encourages fear, anger, and attacks.

"Just as we ask for our children to solve conflict rationally and productively, we as adults must also set this example and work out our differences as professionally as we can and in a manner that allows for respect and civility. 

“In closing, we realize that this will take some adjustment as the new school year is beginning. We hope that in time the emotions of the loss felt now will turn back to excitement for learning, teaching, and grooming the future of Carpinteria citizenry.”

Noozhawk managing editor Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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