Teaching Profession

Pa. Cyber Charter School Fires Most Top Managers

By The Associated Press — October 15, 2012 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

The Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School board has axed its director, finance director, personnel director, compliance officer, and a longtime lawyer, in a near-sweep of its top management that education experts are characterizing as highly unusual and potentially damaging in the long term.

It’s unclear whether the firings, approved by the school’s board in September, have anything to do with the search of the school in July by FBI and IRS agents. A federal grand jury is probing current or former executives of the Midland-based school. School officials confirmed the moves, but said they had nothing to do with the federal investigation.

Andrew Oberg, the school’s fired director, said he believes the school will continue to thrive. “I have so much confidence in the folks that work here, and I told them at a meeting that it needs to continue,” he says.

The removal of so much of the top management, though, could have ripple effects, says Ralph “Jerry” Longo, an associate professor at the University of Pittsburgh’s school of education and former superintendent of the Quaker Valley school district. “I think when you remove that number of people who are in charge of an organization, obviously there’s an impact through the ranks,” he says. “Everyone becomes nervous with his or her situation.”

Along with Oberg, 43, the board terminated finance director Scott Antoline, personnel director Nancy Yanyanin, and compliance officer Judy Shopp. Also dismissed is law firm Barry & Worner of Green Tree, Pa., one of whose attorneys, W. Timothy Barry, has long served the state-chartered online school.

The purge leaves in place school Chief Executive Officer Michael Conti and just one of the four directors who used to report to him. It eliminates one of the two law firms the school leaned on for its legal work. Pennsylvania Cyber is a public school that does most of its teaching online and is open to students from throughout the state. When a student enrolls with the school, his or her home school is compelled to pay tuition based roughly on its average per-pupil cost.

The school has grown from around 500 students in 2000 to a total of 10,284 students, with around 900 more in the application process.

A version of this article appeared in the October 17, 2012 edition of Digital Directions as Pa. Cyber Charter School Fires Most Top Managers

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
IT Infrastructure & Management Webinar
From Chaos to Clarity: How to Master EdTech Management and Future-Proof Your Evaluation Processes
The road to a thriving educational technology environment is paved with planning, collaboration, and effective evaluation.
Content provided by Instructure
Special Education Live Online Discussion A Seat at the Table - Special Education: Proven Interventions for Academic Success
Special education should be a launchpad, not a label. Join the conversation on how schools can better support ALL students.
Special Education K-12 Essentials Forum Innovative Approaches to Special Education
Join this free virtual event to explore innovations in the evolving landscape of special education.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Teaching Profession Teachers Are Pushing for Paid Parental Leave. How It's Going
Efforts to implement paid parental leave policies are slowly gaining traction, with teachers often advocating on their own behalf.
7 min read
Image of a pregnant person at work.
E+
Teaching Profession In Their Own Words Cellphones Turned My Teaching Career From 'Awesome' to Exhausting
A former high school teacher shares how his students' increasing reliance on cellphones drove him out of the classroom.
5 min read
Mitchell Rutherford, who taught biology at Sahuaro High School in Tucson, Ariz., left the profession due, in part, to students' cell phone usage. Here, pictured at Finger Rock Trailhead in Tucson on June 8, 2024.
Mitchell Rutherford, who taught biology at Sahuaro High School in Tucson, Ariz., left the profession due, in part, to students' cell phone usage. Here, pictured at Finger Rock Trailhead in Tucson on June 8, 2024.
Cassidy Araiza for Education Week
Teaching Profession Teachers’ Unions Are Gaining Ground in a State That Once Forbade Them
With unions now representing educators in its largest district, Virginia is seeing a labor resurgence.
7 min read
Image of a folder and a signed agreement.
iStock/Getty