Urbana school board to vote on demoting admins placed on leave

Urbana school board to vote on demoting admins placed on leave

URBANA — The Urbana school board will vote Sunday on whether to demote three of its top officials to teaching positions.

Former Superintendent Don Owen and assistant superintendents Kathy Barbour and Samuel Byndom are listed on the agenda for a board vote to not renew any of their employee contracts.

All three would be reassigned to a "licensed teaching position" for the 2019-20 school year.

Should the board vote to reassign any of the administrators to the classroom, their salaries would be reflective of where they fall on the district's teacher-salary scale and of their "educational achievement and years (of) experience."

Byndom has been on paid leave since late October after allegedly attempting to secretly record a closed board meeting in which his and Owen's employment was the subject.

Owen and Barbour were both placed on paid leave in late November with little explanation.

In previously released statements, the board has indicated that legal restrictions have prevented it from detailing its reasoning.

Ron Langacker of the Urbana-based Langacker Law firm, which represents Owen, said he couldn't comment on the agenda.

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