The Breese District 12 School Board approved a mutual separation agreement with the superintendent on Thursday night.
The action comes six weeks after the teachers union stated that it had no confidence in District 12 Superintendent Jeff Strieker.
Strieker just finished his first year as the district’s leader. He wasn’t present at the school board meeting Thursday or at previous meetings in June.
He couldn’t be reached for comment Thursday night.
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School board members declined an interview with the Belleville News-Democrat after the meeting but issued a statement on behalf of the district and Strieker. In it, they stated that the agreement was for both professional and personal reasons and specifically said it wasn’t a result of fault or misconduct.
Earlier this summer, the union representing teachers in the district’s two schools — Breese Elementary and Beckemeyer Elementary — approved a no-confidence vote in Strieker, according to union president Heather Todd.
The union issued the following statement after Thursday’s meeting:
“The Elementary District 12 Educational Association (EDEA) is grateful that the Breese District 12 School Board has resolved the issue with Superintendent Mr. Jeffrey Strieker. A Vote of No Confidence in Mr. Strieker was taken by the association on Wednesday, May 16, knowing it was not legally binding, but instead a document to notify the school board that members of the association had concerns. With tonight’s board decision, EDEA is excited to move forward, and is anticipating a great school year.”
Todd declined to comment further on the union’s concerns.
Strieker’s last day with the district will be Friday.
An attorney for the district told those present at the meeting that they could read the full separation agreement if they submitted a Freedom of Information Act request. The BND requested the agreement through FOIA on Wednesday, pending the board’s approval. The district has five business days to provide a copy of the document under the law.
According to the statement, the school board credits Strieker with reducing class sizes and updating the district’s curriculum and equipment during his tenure.
“The Board of Education would like to thank Mr. Strieker for his committed service to the School District and its students and wishes him nothing but the utmost success in his future personal and professional endeavors,” the board stated.
Strieker thanked the school community in Breese through the statement.
He started his career in Swansea as a kindergarten teacher at Wolf Branch Elementary School in 1992, according to the State Journal-Register in Springfield.
Strieker eventually worked as superintendent in Bond County Unit 2 and Litchfield District 12. But he returned to the metro-east in 2017 to be closer to family, the Journal-News in Hillsboro reported.
Breese District 12 has about 31 teachers and more than 600 students in its two elementary schools.
Strieker’s salary in the 2017-18 school year was $101,000, according to district data.
Read the district’s full statement
“On June 28, 2018, by mutual agreement and settlement, the Board of Education of Breese Elementary District No. 12 and Superintendent, Jeff Strieker, decided to end their contractual relationship effective June 30, 2018. It is important to the Parties that this is not a result of fault or misconduct, but rather could be best described as a mutual agreement for both professional and personal reasons.
“During his tenure with the District, the Board acknowledges his contributions to the School District’s educational programs, including the mobilization of more student activities, reduction of class sizes in grades 3 through 8, enhancement of technology infusion, replacement of outdated equipment, and the purchase of the new math curriculum with additional curriculum updates forthcoming. It is important to note that Mr. Strieker performed exceptionally well under both stressful professional and emotional circumstances.
“The Board of Education would like to thank Mr. Strieker for his committed service to the School District and its students and wishes him nothing but the utmost success in his future personal and professional endeavors. In turn, Mr. Strieker would like to thank and commend the past and present Community Members, Parents, Board of Education, Administration, Staff and Students for maximizing the success of the students of School District No. 12. Mr. Strieker looks forward to the continued achievement of School District No. 12.
“There will be no further comment regarding this matter at this time.”