WBHS teacher’s non-renewal upheld

BELOIT- The West Branch Local school board Saturday re-affirmed its decision to non-renew a teacher after hearing her appeal earlier in the week.

The board voted 3 to 1 to uphold its decision to non-renew high school English teacher Tracie McFerren’s contract after meeting in special session with her and her representation for six hours on Monday. Mikki Kanagy cast the only dissenting vote, with Earl Trimmer absent. Kanagy also voted against the initial decision to non-renew McFerren’s contract.

In April the board opted to not give McFerren, who had been with the district for five years, a continuing contract after she had served the past two years on an extended limited contract after becoming qualified for a continuing contract.

At the time, schools Superintendent Dr. Scott Weingart would not disclose why McFerren was not being offered a continuing contract, but school records indicated issues with attendance and performance deficiencies. Weingart also noted at that time that the district by law had to either offer McFerren a continuing contract or non-renew her current contract.

After the board’s decision Saturday, McFerren can appeal to the Mahoning County Common Pleas Court.

Kevin Howell can be reached at khowell@salemnews.net