- Special Sections
- Public Notices
By KEVIN KOELLING
CANNELTON – The Cannelton School Board canceled a meeting it scheduled for Tuesday and revised the reason for an executive session it still intends to convene the same day.
As the News reported Monday, the board had scheduled an executive session for 6 p.m., presumably to discuss the Oct. 2 conviction of Schools Superintendent Alva Sibbitt on two felony and two misdemeanor charges. The outcome of that trial in Crawford County was reported in the News’ Oct. 4 edition.
Closed to the public, executive sessions are permissible under Indiana law to allow school boards and other governing bodies to discuss a limited number of topics, including adverse actions considered for employees of the bodies. The board must convene a regular or special meeting, both of which are open to the public, to take any action such as disciplining or firing an employee.
The board’s original notice announced the executive session would be conducted “to discuss performance evaluations of individual employees.” That reason remained in the revised notice, which was provided to the News Monday. Added was “with respect to any individual over whom the governing body has jurisdiction: to receive information concerning the individual’s alleged misconduct and to discuss, before a determination, the individual’s status as an employee.”
Cannelton City Schools Corp. attorney Patrick Shoulders said he wasn’t consulted on the board’s change of plans.
An open-to-the-public regular meeting was originally scheduled to follow the executive session, but a note on the revised notice reads, “there will not be a regular session on this date following the executive session.”
When asked Monday why the changes were made, board member Barbara Beard replied, “I don’t know. I didn’t revise it.” She said she had received the revised notice earlier in the day.
“I’m not going to discuss Doc Sibbitt with you,” she said when asked whether the superintendent had returned to his job after the convictions.