WCSD Board of Trustees Votes to Terminate Traci Davis, Names Dr. Kristen McNeill Interim Superintendent
For Immediate Release
Contact: WCSD Office of Communications and Community Engagement
WCSD Board of Trustees Votes to Terminate Traci Davis,
Names Dr. Kristen McNeill Interim Superintendent
Reno, NV (July 1, 2019) – Today the Board of Trustees of the Washoe County School District voted six to one to terminate Traci Davis’ contract as Superintendent of the District, effective immediately, with cause. Evidence was provided to the District on May 29, 2019, as a result of the discovery period of another case in which an ex-employee was suing the District.
Based on that evidence, and due to the lack of resolution in discussions between legal counsel for the District and Davis’ attorney, it was the responsibility of Board President Katy Simon Holland to call for a Special Meeting of the Board of Trustees to consider that evidence on the public record and to publicly determine what actions should be taken regarding Ms. Davis’ employment with the District.
Pursuant to her employment agreement, the only compensation Ms. Davis will be receiving because of the termination for cause will be earned benefits that have been accrued, such as unused vacation and sick time, plus a $15,000 deferred compensation contribution, all of which totals $122,412.79. Her employment agreement also specifies that in the event of a dispute about her termination, the matter is resolved in District Court. No severance or settlement will be paid unless so ordered by a Court.
The Board voted unanimously to name Dr. Kristen McNeill Interim Superintendent, as the District must have a Superintendent upon the termination of the current Superintendent’s contract. There will be further discussion at the July 23 Board of Trustees meeting to determine the process for hiring the next Superintendent. Dr. McNeill has decades of experience in education, including as teacher and administrator in the Washoe County School District.
“We know this is a very difficult time for employees, students and families, and we want to assure you that the District is in good hands with Dr. McNeill, who is committed to quality, accountability, transparency, and improved communication,” said President Holland. “Today’s discussion and action was difficult, and we have felt the heartbreak and distrust of our employees and the public… but each of the Board members has demonstrated a commitment to addressing this matter publicly, as they are required to do, and in the face of considerable community controversy. We have heard loudly and clearly that the staff of the District and the public desire an atmosphere of greater accountability, collaboration, and transparency, and a focus on our children. We are committed to providing that as much as we are legally and ethically able to. By statute, Ms. Davis’ contract and conduct had to be discussed on the public record, no matter how difficult that discussion was.
“I also want to proactively address the accusations that this District and Board action was somehow due to racial discrimination. That is preposterous,” continued President Holland. “The conduct that was addressed in the evidence the District was provided has no relationship to race, gender, or any other category. This was very simply a matter of the District being presented with substantial evidence of egregious conduct that was, at best, gross negligence of supervision on Ms. Davis’ part as the CEO of the District.”
For further information about compensation due to Ms. Davis, please visit https://www.washoeschools.net/cms/lib/NV01912265/Centricity/Domain/97/Compensation Costs based on Termination.pdf