FCPS school board talks with new search firms

Fayette County Public Schools is talking with new search firms and hopes to have one picked by Friday or Monday to continue the search for a new superintendent.

Proact Search was hired by the school board to find potential candidates but after serious allegations of misconduct surfaced against the firm’s CEO, the school board severed its ties.

The school board isn’t going into details about ending the contract with Proact but in an email to the media on Friday a spokesperson for the school system said they had recently become aware of very disturbing allegations involving the CEO of Proact Search.

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A Chicago Sun-Times article details accusations against Proact CEO, Gary Solomon. The article says in 2001 Solomon was forced out of his position at a Chicago-area high school after his bosses accused him of immoral and unprofessional conduct including allegations he kissed a female student, covered-up students’ drug and alcohol use and sent sexually suggestive emails to students.

Proact responded with the following statement:

"We are disappointed that Fayette County has decided to terminate our contract based on old allegations. No law enforcement authority of any kind ever substantiated any misconduct. Mr. Solomon apologizes and deeply regrets his statements of many years ago and stands by the outstanding work that PROACT has provided to this Board of Education and others.”

During a school board meeting Monday afternoon, the board said Proact found about 30 applicants. The board hopes a new search firm will pick-up where Proact left off and continue the recruiting/vetting process.

The board says it plans to move quickly and still have a new superintendent by July 1st but it wants to have the highest qualified person for the job and may have to extend that date.

The school board is planning another meeting Saturday morning to continue to the search.