August 27, 2014

Elyria
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Wellington school workers issue no-confidence vote

WELLINGTON — More than 100 teachers and non-teaching staff of the Wellington Schools met Sunday night and issued a vote of no confidence in Superintendent Victor Cardenzana, according to a spokeswoman for the teacher’s union.

The highly-charged language in a 12-point resolution alleged that Cardenzana “threatened retaliation for union activities,” “misappropriated” funds from a permanent improvement levy and “used intimidation tactics with veteran staff members.”
Cardenzana was unavailable for comment Sunday night regarding the no-confidence vote.

The vote was unanimous, said Linda Repko, co-president of the teacher’s union. She said 68 of 89 members of the Wellington Education Association were at the meeting, along with 40 of the 59 members of the Wellington Support Staff that represents non-teaching employees of the district.

Repko provided The Chronicle with the list of complaints against Cardenzana, including allegations he “refused to treat the faculty and staff with respect,” “micromanaged within each building” and “released false information to the public.”

The no-confidence vote comes after Cardenzana issued a statement Friday alleging that unions have not been communicating with their members and contending that some teachers earn more per hour than he does.

The top-paid teacher earns $49 an hour by working 184 seven-hour days a year at a salary of $63,220, compared with Cardenzana’s $47 an hour or 260 eight-hour days a year at a salary of $97,500, he said in the letter.

The two unions did not issue a 10-day strike notice Sunday night. Two weeks ago, the union memberships granted their negotiating teams the ability to issue the 10-day strike notice.

Despite the increasingly bitter exchanges between union leadership and the superintendent, Repko said she was hopeful of a negotiated resolution.

“I would love to avoid going on strike,” Repko said. “Every day on the picket line is a day without a paycheck.”

A federal mediator is assisting in the negotiations for a new contract.

Contact Cindy Leise at 653-6250 or cleise@chroniclet.com.