Supt. Scott Andersen and Dist. 5 school board in better days

Our Sunday lead editorial will be about the Lexington/Richland District 5 school board’s conspiracy of silence over the resignation of Superintendent Scott Andersen. As I was editing it earlier today, it occurred to me that I had video of the superintendent together with his board at a time of perfect unity — just under a year ago, when they came to visit us to promote the bond referendum that failed last fall.

I had posted video from this meeting before, but the clips concentrated entirely on the board members. They, after all the ones who are elected and therefore directly accountable to the people (or should be, their recent secrecy to the contrary). And the thing that impressed us was their unanimity on the bond referendum. None of us could remember when the District 5 board had been so unified about anything, so that was where the news lay.

But I remember having the impression that the unanimity might have resulted in part from a good selling job by the superintendent. Superintendents work for boards, but all of them strive to lead their boards when they can. And when they lose that ability, they are often on the way out.

In the above clip, watch for two things:

  • Mr. Andersen’s breezy confidence as he makes his pitch, even to the point of joking about his having "skipped over the price tag." This was obviously a guy who was comfortable in front of his board members.
  • His board was comfortable with him, chuckling and joshing about the fact that "Scott’s not from around here," after the superintendent had explained his ignorance about a piece of property the district had been interested in (ignorance that critics of the board had misinterpreted as a deliberate attempt to deceive, according to Mr. Andersen).

To help you remember, I’m imbedding below the old clip from that meeting as well, with the board members speaking.

5 thoughts on “Supt. Scott Andersen and Dist. 5 school board in better days

  1. Ralph Hightower

    It looks like District 5 is following USC’s model of hiring and firing coaches.
    I do hope that USC’s current coaching staff produces some championships; of the current and past coaches, Ray Tanner is the most successfull.
    I think that District 5 is doing what many corporations are trying: Throw some ideas on the wall and see what sticks!
    Reading The State’s article about the absence of Scott Andersen at the last board meeting, District 5 trustee, Paula Hite, said she didn’t know where Andersen was and why he wasn’t present. In a later article, the readers of The State learn that Andersen was requested to not attend the meeting.
    Paula Hite is a member of the District 5 board; she should know what is going on within the district!
    Because of Hite’s lack of recall and knowledge of what is happening behind closed doors, she lost my confidence. She doesn’t know what the heck is going on in the district.
    In a later article published by The State, Hite says that she is not running for reelection.
    That’s a good thing since she obviously doesn’t know what’s going on in District 5!
    Since I am not a board member, I don’t know what is going on in District 5. The District 5 school board is in severe need of people with credibility! I have lost any confidence in the members of the District 5 school board.

  2. Michael Bishop

    From the SC FOI Act:
    SECTION 30-4-70. Meetings which may be closed; procedure; circumvention of chapter; disruption of meeting; executive sessions of General Assembly.
    (a) A public body may hold a meeting closed to the public for one or more of the following reasons:
    (1) Discussion of employment, appointment, compensation, promotion, demotion, discipline, or release of an employee, a student, or a person regulated by a public body or the appointment of a person to a public body; however, if an adversary hearing involving the employee or client is held, the employee or client has the right to demand that the hearing be conducted publicly. Nothing contained in this item shall prevent the public body, in its discretion, from deleting the names of the other employees or clients whose records are submitted for use at the hearing.
    You guys really need to get a grip…you don’t have a “right” to know everything. As an employee of the District, Mr. Andersen has the right to privacy and the Board has the right to respect his rights.

  3. Ralph Hightower

    Thanks to the sleuthing of WIS-TV, we learn the true reason for Andersen’s “dismissal”. It was because of a violation of personnel policy, a supervisor dating or having an affair with a subordinate; in this case, the superindent having an affair with a school principal. At least, I hope that supervisors dating those they supervise is a violation of personnel policy.
    Regardless, the District 5 board hides behind secrecy whenever they have the opportunity.

  4. Bernice Andersen

    I am elated to put this tragedy behind me and my children. I am grateful to all of the people and my church who provided financial assistance and emotional support to me and my children. I am also thankful to the Richland County Family Court Judges, Guardian ad litem (Dick Whiting), Financial Forensic Expert(Barbara Saylor), Mediator (Michael Self), Private Detectives (Jimmy and Johnny Edwards), and of course, my attorney, Monet S. Pincus, Esq, Pincus Family Law.
    I am looking forward to returning to Utah and continuing my legal studies and, most importantly, providing for, nurturing and giving my seven beautiful children the attention they deserve.
    Lastly, I wish Dr. Scott Andersen the best of luck and wonderful future.


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