• Volusia County school board discusses removal of superintendent

    By: Chip Skambis , Megan Cruz

    Updated:

    DeLAND, Fla. - Volusia County School Board members voted to move down a path to remove Superintendent Tom Russell at a meeting Tuesday night. 

    Board member Ruben Colon introduced a motion to allow the school board attorney and chairman to discuss terms for the early termination of the superintendent. 

    School board members voted 4-1 to approve the motion, with member Linda Cuthbert voting against against it. 

    This vote allows for discussion about the removal of the superintendent at the next meeting. 

    Colon cited communication issues between Russell and the board as the impetus for the decision. 

    He also mentioned an investigation being conducted by the Department of Justice into the district but did not discuss it in detail. 

    Colon said at the meeting he was not notified by Russell about the DOJ investigation and was unaware the school district had hired an attorney to handle it. 

    “This is DOJ, not PTA,” said Colon. 

    Russell said other board members were aware of the DOJ investigation. He did not indicate what the subject of the investigation is. 

    “The Department of Justice never let us know what the complaint is,” said Russell at the meeting. 

    Channel 9 has previously reported the DOJ is conducting an inquiry into allegations of discrimination against autistic students at Volusia County Schools.

    The superintendent’s contract runs through Sept. 1, 2020. 

    This is a developing story. Stay with Channel 9 for updates. 

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