Former Petersburg superintendent files lawsuit against School Bo - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Former Petersburg superintendent files lawsuit against School Board

Joseph Melvin (Source: NBC12) Joseph Melvin (Source: NBC12)

A former Petersburg Schools superintendent has sued the Petersburg School Board, claiming they owe him over $100,000 because he was fired without cause.

According to court documents, Joseph Melvin says he was fired on October 20.

At the time, the school system claimed that Melvin was stepping down and the Board voted to honor the decision.

The decision is "in the best interest of the school division, as it will allow Dr. Melvin to explore other professional opportunities, while allowing the school board to immediately begin the search for a new superintendent," the School Board said in a statement at the time.

But in the documents filed in Petersburg Circuit Court on Thursday, Melvin included a memo he received from School Board Chairman Kenneth L. Pritchett:

"This is to advise you that the School Board has decided to remove you as Superintendent and to terminate your employment with the City of Petersburg School Division as provided in article X (c) of your contract effective close of business October 31, 2015. Also as provided in your contract, you will be paid the salary, but not other compensation, that you would have received from November 1, 2015, through June 30, 2015 [sic]."

In the complaint, Melvin said he asked Pritchett if he would be allowed to resign. Pritchett said yes, and the school board agreed to "pay him his accumulated vacation pay."

The Petersburg City School Board announced that they would appoint interim superintendent Linda Shifflette on October 27. Melvin claims that "the School Board had already contracted and/or arranged to hire a new interim superintendent, Linda Shifflette, some three weeks earlier."

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