Rachlin era ends in Oysterponds

02/02/2011 9:33 PM |

The Oysterponds school board voted 4-2 Wednesday night to end its relationship with Dr. Stuart Rachlin, who has served as the district’s superintendent for the past five years. Board members Linda Goldsmith and Krista De Kerillas voted against the measure.

Interim principal Joan Frisicano will serve as superintendent until a part-time interim superintendent is appointed.

Wednesday’s vote amends a buyout agreement that would have paid Dr. Rachlin $100,000 to end his contract in June 2011 rather than the following year. The board reduced the payment to $76,000.

The decision was made in recognition that the differences between the board and Dr. Rachlin wouldn’t be conducive to his continuing in Oysterponds, board president Deborah Dumont said.

“We are trying to get this school moving in a positive direction,” board member Krista De Kerillis added.

After agreeing to the buyout, the board learned that Dr. Rachlin had accepted a part-time position as superintendent in the Wainscott School District. The Oysterponds board then argued that the original buyout agreement included a provision requiring the superintendent to first gain district approval for any job he negotiated while still employed for Oysterponds.

On Jan. 18 the board voted 5-1 to withhold approval for Dr. Rachlin’s taking the Wainscott job, but he appeared in Wainscott to start work there the following day.

Dr. Rachlin’s contract with Wainscott pays him $48,000 a year pro-rated through June. Wainscott school board president Nancy McCaffrey said the district anticipates extending the contract for the following year. The part-time job offers no benefits.

Dr. Rachlin has received more than $30,000 from Oysterponds for unused vacation and sick time and he and his wife will receive full health insurance benefits for the rest of their lives.

He declined to comment on Wednesday’s board vote.



20 Comment

  • Oh my. Well that is some tough negotiating I’ll tell you that. Nice job there folks.

  • It should be noted the “full health insurance” was part of his original contract and not provided by the current BOE.

  • Why did Dr. Rachlin leave GHS, BHS and Oysterponds? How were his Job performance reviews?
    Why did BHS freeze all their records? Why o Why did Oysterponds previous BOEs sign a 5 year contract? How about hiring someone beginning in Admin., at less expense, and for a shorter term?
    How about listerning to someone who does not live in the V.I.?

  • Finally. 0 for 2 there OP. First Mattius, now this guy. It really is a good idea to have people with absolutely no background in education running a school. It totally makes sense and clearly is worth every penny.

  • nope, 90% was in original contract and should have b een negiotated DOWN, not up

  • Is Wainscott the Oysterponds south, deju vu!

  • i believe they should have bargained him down to 50 grand-which is already more than enough for doing nothing.

  • The only one that has won anything here is Dr. Rachlin! Now he can keep working at Wainscott with our money in his pockets! He doesn’t need any benefits when we are already paying for them.
    He can “have his cake and eat it, too”. The BOE should have agreed to give him a lot less money.
    I am so tired of all the things that have been going on in our school for the last few years. Hopefully the school can get our act together and move forward. We need new people that are in our corner! New Superintendent, Principle and BOE members!

  • The $48,000 he is getting from Wainscott should have been deducted from the $100,000, why give him $76,000? Actually why pay him at all if he did not hold up his end of the contract? Too bad we still did not have Don Borham or Charlie Woznick! Please get someone local who knows what they are doing and can pull this school together again no further apart!

  • The previous board was responsible for hiring Mattus and Rachlan and for extending his contract without waiting to see how he was doing. But this board is responsible for the buyout contract. Enough blame to go around for everyone. There must be a better way to run a school! People who know something about education should be on these boards.

  • The people on the school board should be better about checking on who they are hiring. The board was told that Mattus was bad news but they wouldn’t listen. Rachlan was let go at GReenport and he was bought out at Bridgehampton under secretive settlement. When do things like this raise some Red Flags? Hope they do a better job this time for the sake of the kids. If they can’t, then maybe it is time to merge with GReenport and Southold.

  • Wasn’t linda Goldsmith on both these boards?

  • OP Board Members–For the good of the community and the betterment of the children, please understand that it is time for you to put your egos aside. There was a time when OP was the strongest school on the NF. Sadly, that era ended when Ms. Krakel retired. Since then it has been off kilter. Why? There has been no leadership. Mattis, Stew, and yes, you have allowed OP to falter.

  • I wish Dr. Rachlin the best of luck in his new position. I am sure that Wainscott will benefit from his knowledge, professionalism and civility.

  • The most fitting recommendation for this fella’ would be “I cannot think of a thing that I can say about Dr. Rachlin that would in any way prevent or hurt his chances for finding work elsewhere”.

    As I said before, the negotiation skills demonstrated by the BOE in Oysterponds rests somewhere between Chamberlain in 1938 and non-existent.

  • I stand by my statement. It is apparent that the concept of a contract is a mystery to many in this town. I’m sure the BOE settled on the advice of an attorney. Perhaps the BOE should hire the next superintndent on a per diem basis. I can’t wait for the next chapter in this comedy.

  • Another scientific sign of Neanderthals mating with human!

  • …or find another attorney…..

  • Mind you that in the midst of all this crap with the past two superintendents and rogue, out of control board members, it is the kids, teachers, secretaries, janitors and parent volunteers who keep the school humming every day. Kudos to them. That said, everyone needs to work together now, because we actually have a competent group of parents, teachers, boe members and( hopefully), newly hired leadership. Let teachers now begin paying attention to the needs of the more gifted students, and accept the challenge to stop doing things “the way we always did it” Embrace new training and new models of education. Parents could organize themselves, reach out to BOE members on a person-to-person level, and advocate more for the kids. The new leaders hired could actually, well, lead, without letting the school degenerate into a personal feuding ground. The BOE needs to recognize that just because they are privvy to things no one else is, they do not know everything. Far from it. Their role should be to bring all parties together and actually listen to the people on the ground, not to come up with their own plan inside the vacuum of their elected office and and try to force it down everyone’s throat. The taxpayers need to remember that in spite of all this drama, every day our community’s most vulnerable members are getting a pretty darn good education in that building. Let us all just hold ourselves to the standards of behavior and level of maturity that we teach our kids each day.

  • As far as I’m concerned, his contract should have become moot when all the shenanigans started with him. The board should have fired him, but didn’t want to deal with the hassle of an ongoing legal issue into the future. Well, we already pay legal counsel a fortune, so why not let the lawyers earn it in court. They took the easy route by settling and making a very weak negotiation while they were at it. Heck, it’s not their money they are playing with anyhow…