LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- After six years as the leader of Jefferson County Public Schools, Dr. Donna Hargens smiled as the board president announced her resignation. She said nothing, but instead Chris Brady read a statement.
“Although Dr. Hargens regrets that her approach to implementing the strategic plan for JCPS no long aligns with the Board's approach, she is grateful for having provided leadership for the school district for the past six years,” Brady said.
With her resignation came a newly negotiated contract. The negotiated terms include a $60,000 tax deferred contribution to an annuity plan. Plus compensation for unused sick days and vacation days and $46,000 for healthcare. It all totals just over $200,000 in payouts.
“The board believe that it is in the best interest of employees and students to have a new leader to guide the district through the strategic plan,” Brady said.
Hargens agrees to a smooth transition and her current contract, which lasted until 2019, and pays her $276,000 a year, will end on July 1.
The board spent nearly an hour and a half in executive session before making the announcement but some parents tell us they were not surprised by the decision.
“I can't say I'm happy that someone lost their job but I do think that hopefully the change for JCPS,” said Rob Mattheu, parent.
In the deal, Hargens agrees to cooperate with the board and answer any questions for one year.
Over her tenure, Hargens has dealt with a lot of criticism from parents and teachers. Many say they're looking forward to the future with a new leader.
“I think that there are a lot of hopeful teachers that we will be able to get a leader that will move us forward in a positive direction,” said Brent McKim, JCTA present.
Dr. Hargens will remain the superintendent until July 1. The board will have to name an interim superintendent while they search for a permanent leader. No decisions have been made on who will act as the interim superintendent once Dr. Hargens officially leaves.
Dr. Hargens' new agreement can be found below:
Previous coverage on her leadership with JCPS:
- February 22, 2017 – JCPS: No action taken on Hargens
- February 21, 2017 -- Parents pushing for dismissal of JCPS superintendent
- June 29, 2016 -- JCPS Board: ‘Hargens has hardest job in the city'
- June 28, 2016 – JCPS evaluates Hargens’ leadership
- May 10, 2016 -- Board members question Dr. Hargens’ leadership
- May 9, 2016 – Hargens petition gains more signatures
- May 5, 2016 – Parent starts petition to remove Supt. Hargens