JeffCo Schools superintendent resigns at explosive board meeting

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JEFFERSON COUNTY, Colo. — An explosive school board meeting in Jefferson County Saturday began with the resignation of a long-time superintendent before ending in a chorus of boos directed at conservative members of the board.

There was a shift in board politics following the November election, which brought in a new conservative majority. Following the election, Dr. Cindy Stevenson announced her plans to retire on June 30, but, Saturday, she said she’s leaving in two weeks because of problems with the new board members.

Amateur video captured Saturday morning’s contentious school board meeting as Stevenson said she could no longer lead the district.

“You must have trust and respect,” she said. “They do not trust me and they do not respect me.”

And so, despite a standing ovation from a room full of her supporters, Stevenson announced her resignation.

“My issue is serving you, serving our community and, most importantly, our kids,” she continued. “So I did approach the board, we will be reaching  an agreement, I will be gone by the end of the month, and I just want you to know.”

Newly elected board president Ken Witt didn’t answer questions directed at him during the contentious meeting, but he did speak to FOX31 Denver’s Kent Erdahl later in the day.

“It was disappointing that the meeting was disrupted,” Witt said. “I think there was some organized attendance there that made it difficult to conduct business, and that’s unfortunate.”

Witt also answered Stevenson’s accusation that the board doesn’t trust or respect her.

“I was disappointed with that comment, but trust is a two-way street and we’re going to move forward,” Witt said.

During the meeting, fellow board member Lesley Dahlkemper attempted to ask the new members how the decision is good for 85,000 students in the district.

Though Witt didn’t answer before the meeting adjourned, FOX31 Denver’s Kent Erdahl asked Witt whether JeffCo Schools was better off with or without Stevenson.

“You know, Dr. Stevenson has already announced her resignation, so we’re focused on the future and we’re focused on finding the right and best superintendent that we can attract to this district, and we’re going to move forward with our academic goals.”



  • Chris Savoy

    The new renegade tea party Jeffco school board has woken the sleeping giant with this last antic. Only 30% of Jeffco voters voted in the last election and that is why these lunatics are on the school board. If we band together we can easily recall these people who only care about their children, their agenda.
    Firstly, they illegally hired their own lawyer. Secondly, Ken Witt has LIED on his resume about his work history and qualifications (Just wait this story is about to break) . Finally, they make it impossible for Cindy Stevenson to transition a new superintendent by voting against her every step of the way.
    Jeffco parents must RECALL Ken Witt, Julie Williams and John Newkirk! We have a case because of their unethical and illegal behavior. We also have the votes. Don’t put your head in the sand anymore. This is our county; 30% Republican, 30% Democrat, and 30% Independent voters. Don’t let a few fringe tea-party extremists put our children at risk.

    • James Sternesky

      I am a parent of two jeffco students. the bullying by Ms. Stevenson’s supporters is abhorent and offensive the electiions are over. SHE is choosing to resign. Get over it. I think most peole here must not be parents of current students. They are just rablerousers. No parent in their right mind would think meetings where they continue to disrupt serves the student population. I ask you who is acting ugly here.

  • Pootey Tang

    Chris Savoy..You in the teachers union? Be truthful now.. Ol` Cindy will walk with a 100K plus PERA slush fund,probably on the phone to Bill Ritter or Romer asking how to get a no show job to pad it even more.

  • Mike

    The voters are tired of the same old garbage. The new board members are there to try something new to improve the education of our children. Some of them have kids in Jeffco. We know what doesn’t work. Let’s let this new crew make some improvements.

  • concerned jeffco mom

    I am a concerned parent. I am not happy with what happened today. I am not happy with board members meeting behind closed doors, using our tax dollars on unnecessary lawyers, and forcing out a superintendent due to leave in several months. What is going on during board meetings? I would like answers to what the real agenda is here!!! I want to know what is going on; it is my children they are impacting!!!

  • Citizen Pete

    I would bet that that meeting was stacked with teachers union members. Lots of them had nice little buttons on. I recognized one of the Jeffco principals in the front row yelling “recall” and what sounded to me like swearing when he walked out. That is not conduct appropriate for a school principal. He and those teachers work for the citizens who elected the new board majority. And based upon what I saw and heard, Cindy Stevenson resigned. She was not forced out. And her tearful little tantrum does not change the fact that she resigned. She is a highly paid manager who serves at the pleasure of the board and the citizens of the county. She is not entitled to her job. If she wants to leave fine.

    This is ALL about the teachers union control and very little about students, I can guarantee that.

  • Lefty

    This is just another instance of the long-standing right wing plan to destroy public education in the US. After all, we can’t have the plebs becoming literate and educated, just as the slaveholders didn’t want their slaves to read.

  • Ron Houston

    For the first time in her career at Jeffco, she hasn’t been getting her way. That’s what happens to those who feel the world revolves around only their thinking. The status quo is not working, Dougco is making some real positive changes for the KIDS. Its time Jeffco does the same, good riddance.

  • Brenda Bronson

    The newly elected majority of this school board skunk off to meet with their illegally hired lawyer rather than face their constituents. That’s the new normal.

  • Deb

    How many of you commenting are actually participating in the change you want to occur? How many of you regularly attend PTA/PTSO meetings at your school? How many of you in MS/HS can name every one of your child’s teachers? How many School Board documents and policies have you read recently? How much of your information is coming from those experiences rather than what you’re being brainwashed to think is happening? I am shocked that the 3 new School Board members (and those who support them) think they know better how to run this already great school district better than those in the trenches each and every day. Disgusting!!

  • Jeffco Voter

    Jefferson County teachers are doing a great job with our kids. This district has been strong for years. Great job Jeffco!

  • Kristen

    I am with you Chris savoy we can and must recall . Teach these ruthless heathens some humility. We must protect or teachers and schools. Lets request a copy if the charter and see what we need to do legally and start collection signatures.

  • Carter Wiggins

    Elections have consequences. A disgraceful union thug event. This is how the left acts when they lose elections. I am all for school reform. Teachers should be about kids best interest first, not the unions.

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