Decatur school board ends Superintendent David Dude’s contract

The City Schools of Decatur Board of Education announced Tuesday morning that they are ending the contract for schools superintendent David Dude.

The school board said in a released statement that Dude and the board members mutually agreed “to amicably part ways.” His separation comes a week after the board voted to place Dude on paid administrative leave during an investigation into his business conduct.

“The City Schools of Decatur Board of Education and Dr. David Dude feel it is in the best interest of the school community and our stakeholders that we start anew as we begin our recovery from this terrible pandemic,” according to the board in a statement.

Dude is facing allegations from a lawsuit filed in January by David Adams, a former Human Resources chief who alleges that in 2017, former Chief Financial Officer Susan Hurst told Adams the school board provided “an improper salary increase” by reimbursing Dude’s expenses without receipts. The lawsuit alleged Dude used vacation days that were not tracked in the district’s reporting system.

Adams also alleged Dude retaliated against Adams’ efforts to hold Dude accountable when the superintendent questioned Adams’ job performance in an interview with the blog., which initially reported on the lawsuit against Dude, reported its investigation unveiled evidence supporting the lawsuit’s allegations against Dude.

Interim superintendent Maggie Fehrman, who previously served as assistant superintendent, has been named Decatur’s finalist for the superintendent position. The board said in a statement that they will vote to approve a one-year contract for Fehrman at their May 11 regular meeting.

Fehrman said in a statement that she’s looking forward to continuing the work with the school community.

“We are fortunate to have in Dr. Fehrman the leader City Schools of Decatur needs to ensure a continued focus on our students,” said Board Chair Tasha White. “We will not miss a beat as we finish this school year strong, focus this summer on remediation, and return to the classroom this fall with great confidence.”