Former Superintendent John Q. Porter and Oklahoma City Public Schools board Chairman Cliff Hudson both resigned today as part of a settlement agreement approved during a 4 p.m. special meeting.
As part of the agreement, Porter will:Receive his regular salary, plus health insurance premiums up to $408 monthly, through June 30. Receive a one-time $225,000 payment from the Oklahoma City Public Schools Foundation. Receive up to $30,000 for legal and public relation services fees from the foundation.
The board voted 6-1 to approve the agreement and related motions, including canceling a Feb. 6 due process hearing when both sides’ cases were to be presented. District 7 representative Wilfredo Santos Rivera was the lone no vote on all counts.
“I felt he (Porter) was denied his opportunity to give his side of the story,” Santos Rivera said, explaining his voting after the meeting.
In a statement included in the settlement, Porter thanked Hudson for his dedication as chairman while noting they “do not agree on how to lead this district.”
“The decision to resign is difficult for me because of those who have sacrificed to help me succeed and my passion and training over the past 20 years that prepared me to try to transform this school district,” he said, adding that he plans to stay in Oklahoma City.
“In a short time living here, I feel connected and part of this community unlike any place I’ve lived,” he said.
Porter is out of town with his family, an official said.
By way of commenting on his resignation — which he did not announce during the meeting — Hudson recounted strides in MAPS for Kids efforts and financial accountability he has seen the district make over the last seven years; the time he has served as chairman.
“It’s been a pleasure to see all that’s been achieved,” he said.
Under the settlement, the board withdrew reasons previously stated to terminate Porter, which included allegations that he was improperly reimbursed for personal travel expenses. As part of the agreement, Porter will reimburse the district $5,000 in disputed expenses. – Emily Jerman
More Porter coverage:
School superintendent’s suspension causes heated board meeting
OKCPS’ votes to suspend superintendent
Report: Council member questioned bid process in Porter’s former district
School board will meet again Hudson offers to resign if Porter does the same