Broward schools leadership change will be costly for taxpayers

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Broward County Public Schools Superintendent Vickie Cartwright agreed to leave her job by way of a mutual termination agreement.

Amid negotiations, it won’t be until about Feb. 15 that taxpayers will learn just how much money she will be walking away with.

Had she been terminated without cause, Cartwright would have been provided 90 days’ notice and three months paid, and 20 weeks or five months of severance pay, plus any vacation and sick time.

With a $350,000 salary, that would have been at least $233,000.

“I assume that she’s going to try to negotiate presumably something more than that,” Attorney Dana Gallup said adding that Cartwright still had two more years in her contract.

Gallup said Cartwright’s attorney will also take into account what her predecessor, Robert Rucie, received for his separation agreement. His exit package was about three-quarters of a million dollars.

“We just gave someone almost a million dollars, one person, but we can’t give our employees more than a one percent raise,” School Board member Debra Hixon said after Runcie’s agreement was approved in May 2021.

Ben Wilcox, the co-founder of Integrity Florida, a nonpartisan watchdog group, said the district will also have to pay for the search of their new boss.

“Political meddling will come at tax payer’s expense,” Wilcox said.

About the Author:

In January 2017, Hatzel Vela became the first local television journalist in the country to move to Cuba and cover the island from the inside. During his time living and working in Cuba, he covered some of the most significant stories in a post-Fidel Castro Cuba.