Two fired Peters school employees unidentified

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Peters school directors on Monday voted unanimously to fire two employees, but declined to provide details, including the identity of the employees.

The employees were identified on the agenda only by number and school directors did not publicly discuss the issue before the vote was taken.

According to district Solicitor Jack Cambest, both employees waived their rights to hearings before the school board.

One of the employees was terminated due to a violation of Section 514 of the Pennsylvania School Code, which allows districts to fire employees due to: incompetency; intemperance; neglect of duty; violation of any of the school laws; or other improper conduct.

School directors cited Section 1122 of the code in firing the other employee, which provides for discharge of a contracted employee due to: immorality; incompetency; unsatisfactory teaching performance; intemperance; cruelty; persistent negligence in the performance of duties; wilful neglect of duties; physical or mental disability as documented by competent medical evidence; advocation of or participating in un-American or subversive doctrines; conviction of a felony or acceptance of a guilty plea; persistent and wilful violation of or failure to comply with school laws.

Mr. Cambest said he could not comment further about the firings except to say that an investigation is ongoing.

The Post-Gazette has filed a Right-to-Know request to obtain the names of the employees.

After the termination votes were taken, school board members voted unanimously to replace former director of buildings and grounds Glenn Franceschina, but gave no reason for the move. He had not submitted a resignation or retirement notice.

The board voted unanimously to appoint retired buildings and grounds director John Mizia to temporarily fill the position, retroactive to Oct. 1 through the beginning of November, when new director Ronald Gault is expected to take over.

Mr. Mizia will be paid $320 per day for a minimum 8-hour day, while Mr. Gault will earn $77,500 per year as part of the three-year pact that school directors unanimously approved Monday.

The board also voted unanimously to release Superintendent Nina Zetty from her contract with the school district, allowing her to accept a job as superintendent of the Gateway School District.

Ms. Zetty, who came to Peters as assistant superintendent in 2006, is expected to work through the end of November. She was named superintendent in Peters in 2008 and had been earning $142,870 per year. Her current contract was set to expire in August 2015.

"I am personally grateful for the wonderful people I've met and worked with in this school district," said Ms. Zetty, who will earn $150,000 per year in her five-year contract with Gateway. "It's a very supportive community and an amazing staff."

Ms. Zetty will be replaced by Joseph Dimperio, who was named acting superintendent at a rate of $500 per day for up to one year.

Mr. Dimperio, formerly the superintendent of West Mifflin Area School District, also had served as acting superintendent in Peters during the 2008 transition between Ms. Zetty and former Superintendent Timm Mackley.

Mr. Dimperio, of Mt. Lebanon, has more than 40 years of education experience and is expected to again assist the district with a new superintendent search. That process is set to begin Monday when the district has scheduled a personnel session at 6:30 p.m. to discuss the search process.

The board also accepted the resignation of Nancy McCann, director of Human Resources.

education - neigh_south - neigh_washington

Janice Crompton: jcrompton@post-gazette.com or 412-851-1867.


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