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Lessons from the (not so distant) past

The rumor that's floating around suggests that the Board of Ed has struck a deal with Superintendent James Williams on his departure from the district.

The alleged deal: Williams will get to resign, rather than be terminated, and stay until mid-September. The board will give him the $110,000 severance his contract provides for if he's terminated under the no-fault clause in his contract.

No board member has confirmed to me that that's the deal being floated.

And we won't know either way until the board meeting at noon today.

It's worth noting, though, that if there is truth to that rumor, there's one thing the board ought to consider -- which is what happened when they agreed to give former Deputy Superintendent Folasade Oladele a $215,000 package on her way out.

The control board has to approve expenditures over $50,000. And they weren't too eager to sign off on a package for Oladele that was more than four times what her contract provided for.

That severance package got caught in limbo. The control board deadlocked on the issue. And in the meantime, the date on Oladele's resignation came and went.

She drew vacation days for a few weeks and then the Board of Ed voted to give her a $49,900 package.

Well, if the generous package for Oladele wouldn't fly, it's not clear why a somewhat similar package for Williams would fly. (Similar in the sense that both packages exceed the amount either person's contract provides for.)

For now, all we can do is ponder.

Answers should start to become clear (and public) this afternoon.

- Mary Pasciak

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About School Zone

Denise Jewell Gee

Denise Jewell Gee

Denise Jewell Gee joined The Buffalo News in 2007 and currently covers education and suburban schools. She also writes a column for the City & Region section and previously covered government in Erie County and Niagara Falls. Gee graduated from Boston University with degrees in journalism and political science.

@denisejewellgee |

Tiffany Lankes

Tiffany Lankes

Tiffany Lankes joined The Buffalo News in 2013 and primarily covers the Buffalo Public Schools. She has written about education since 2003 at newspapers in Florida and New York. In 2008, she was a nominated finalist for The Pulitzer Prize. Lankes is an Amherst native and graduate of Sacred Heart Academy and Syracuse University. She started her journalism career writing for the News’ NeXt section.

@TiffanyLankes |

Sandra Tan

Sandra Tan

Sandra Tan has been a cityside reporter for The Buffalo News since 2000 and currently covers the Buffalo Public Schools beat. She previously covered the Williamsville school district and was a full-time education reporter for five years prior to joining The News. She graduated from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.

@BNschoolzone |

Deidre Williams

Deidre Williams

Deidre Williams began working for The Buffalo News in 1999 and currently covers Buffalo Public Schools. She formerly was a suburban reporter on the Northtowns beat and has been a cityside reporter covering communities since 2004. Williams has a mass communications degree from Towson University.

@DeidreWilliamsB |