Recommended D60 Asst Superintendent history questioned - KOAA.com | Continuous News | Colorado Springs and Pueblo

Recommended D60 Asst Superintendent history questioned

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Questions are being raised about the background of the Assistant Superintendent recommended by the School Board.

Last week, the Pueblo School Board recommended Walter Calinger for the position of Assistant Superintendent.

A spokesperson for the District told News 5 that they identified Calinger as the top candidate for the position after two round of interviews and reference checks.

Now his past is being called into question, with past reports showing teacher strikes, "no confidence" votes, and failure to meet federal education guidelines.

"When you come in with that kind of a track record of not dealing well with teachers, with employees, anytime there's a teacher strike, walkout, vote of no confidence, that's very concerning," said Pueblo Education Association President Suzanne Ethredge.

Between 2005 and 2008, Calinger served as Superintendent for a school district in Ohio.

According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, during that time, the Richmond Heights Education Association gave him a unanimous "no confidence" vote, and entered into a teacher's strike.

Next, he served as Superintendent in a Pennsylvania school district.

The Pittsburgh-Post Gazette reports Calinger's contract was not renewed after three years there, one source claiming he brought down employee morale.

"It's very concerning to me that may we have placed someone into a position who can't work with teachers," Ethredge continued. 

Although Calinger was recommended by the Board, he hasn't officially been hired yet.

We reached out to the District about the steps of the hiring process. A spokesperson told News 5 that while reference checks were done prior to the recommendation, background checks are typically done after the position is approved.

They did not specify if a background check has been conducted yet. 

"I would hope that the Board, after hearing and seeing all this information that's coming out, would consult with their legal consul and find a way to not hire him," Ethredge said. 

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