Editor’s note: For clarification, the board only approved of three weeks of paid personal leave for the four administrators.
WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — After more than three hours in closed session, the City View ISD board returned to open session to announce four current administrators will remain on personal leave and will reevaluate in the March board meeting.
The board returned from closed session at 10:38 p.m. after nearly three hours in an executive session in which they discussed the arrests of Superintendent Tony Bushong, Assistant Superintendent Carrie Allen, Athletic Director Rudy Hawkins, and Counselor Cindy Leaverton.
The board voted to allow the four to remain on paid personal leave for the next three weeks.
“Because these employees have been arrested but not charged or indicted, we believe this is appropriate action to take at this time. We will reevaluate at the March board meeting,” school board member Susan Robertson read off a piece of paper before being flipped over by the school’s attorney.
In the latter half, the board voted unanimously to appoint Jesse Thomas as the acting superintendent. The meeting was then adjourned.
The school board is set to meet again in March.
Watch the rest of the meeting below after members return from executive session.
These decisions come after much criticism from community members who say the arrests and charges were steps in the right direction but allowing the four to remain in their leadership positions is a step backward.
“I went to school with some of the people who were affected by this and seeing their posts that they are extremely happy that the proper steps are being taken,” First Step Inc. Outreach Manager Mackenzie Splawn said.
“So I’m gonna put this on y’all. Do you really think that our superintendent, after these allegations, our coach, our counselor, all these people are gonna be able to walk right back in here and pick up and carry on? Guilty or innocent? The allegations were made in the court of public appeal, they are guilty. Thank you,” former City View ISD Board Member Michael Parker said.
Just after 8 p.m., members covered the windows of the doors with pieces of paper as they were in executive session. The building administrator later said the papers were presented by students who wrote them for school board appreciation month.
In the public comment portion of the meeting, people called for those administrators charged to be relieved of their duties instead of being placed on leave.
One of the people who spoke was former City View ISD board member Michael Parker who resigned from the board in August 2022.