FSCC declines contract renewal

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

By Jason E. Silvers

The Fort Scott Tribune

During a special meeting Monday, the Fort Scott Community College Board of Trustees unanimously approved a settlement between FSCC and Brian "Chris" Eads, a former academic advisor at the college.

The document, called a Settlement Agreement and General Release of All Claims, came about as a result of due process proceedings previously requested by Eads, a tenured staff member who has worked at the college a little more than four years, FSCC President Clayton Tatro said.

The agreement officially concludes Eads' employment with the college at the end of the 2010-11 school year. The board is required by law to notify an employee of its intent to not renew a contract on or before May 20. The agreement also states that Eads has a right to request a hearing in the matter, which he did.

Tatro said the settlement is the result of discussions between Eads and college officials to try to resolve their differences without a hearing. He added both sides have discussed stipulations contained in the settlement but Eads has not yet signed the document.

During its March meeting, the board approved, by a 4-1 vote, a resolution of intent to not renew Eads' contract for the 2011-12 school year.

Eads' contact is not being renewed due to a reduction in workforce in the college's Student Support Services department after a federal grant that funded the department was not renewed last fall. The grant paid for the salaries of three employees in that department, Tatro said.

Due to the loss of the grant, Tatro said a secretary in Student Support Services has been moved to another office and the position will not be filled. Another employee's contract was shortened due to loss of funding.

The agreement states that Eads has up to 21 days to consider the agreement before signing, and he has seven days following the signing to rescind the agreement in its entirety. Eads could not be reached for comment as of deadline. The board discussed the agreement during a 15-minute executive session.

After returning to open session, the board voted on the matter and adjourned.