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SRVUSD Superintendent Schmitt retiring at end of school year

Original post made on Apr 2, 2020

Superintendent Rick Schmitt announced publicly Thursday that he will retire at the end of the school year in June after four years at the helm of the SRVUSD and 40 years in education overall.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, April 2, 2020, 9:25 AM

Comments (19)

Posted by Mary
a resident of Sycamore Valley Elementary School
on Apr 2, 2020 at 5:17 pm

Shhhhh- don’t tell Greg Marvel that the Great Recession was actually from 2007 to 2009.

Posted by Mr. Hand
a resident of Danville
on Apr 2, 2020 at 8:53 pm

"a respectful working environment"
That means he smiled while he lied and ruined your job. SRVUSD was a destination district because of families and educators working together. By taking students out of the classroom and placing them online, he began "distance learning" before we even had a pandemic.
Schmitt's attitude behind closed doors was "if you don't like it, there's the door". he handled that office like Trump, move people around, circle the wagons, wreck what made things great, and then bail while the dumpster is still burning claiming he did a great job. People who ran from this district under his tenure cite his agenda as not being for students. he was here for the money, plain and simple.
Good riddance.
Now, on to replace the out of touch board of education with some new blood who actually care about this community and won't hide behind lies and poor leadership.

Posted by mrszalewski2
a resident of Danville
on Apr 3, 2020 at 6:52 am

I hope the school board has learned from the disasters that have occurred under Rick Schmitt’s tenure and hire a more appropriate candidate.

Posted by ParentSRV
a resident of Danville
on Apr 3, 2020 at 7:47 am

The SRVUSD school board should be ashamed of how they mismanaged Rick Schmitt.
1) Hire a person from a district 1/3 the size of our district. A rookie that you pay like a rock star.

2) The school board gave Schmitt a salary 100k greater than he was making. This is a 45% salary increase. Schmitt will reap the rewards of this huge increase in his pension for the rest of his life.

3) Grant Schmitt a salary increase the same year a child dies with one reason behind the death being Schmitt's financial decision to allow 57-61 kids in a swimming pool. Schmitt was informed in Nov 2017 that this decision would lead to a drowning. Ben Curry drown in May 2018 which resulted in an 8 million dollar settlement.

4) Schmitt failed to determine accountability of the people involved in the drowning of Ben Curry. Only SRV High allowed swim class with expired life guard certs. Aaron Becker walked away from a drowning 15 year old boy. But the accountability also included the school board and his administration who were present when a teacher informed them in Nov 2017 that a student would drown if they did not reduce PE class sizes.

5) Shmitt held classes on campuses with no power, lights, heat or working fire alarms. Putting in danger our 5-11 year old children. SRVUSD was the only school district in bay area to hold classes with out power for the entire day.

6) Schmitt failed to take action against students which posted a video of a girl in the bathroom. Schmitt only acted after the parent's filed a lawsuit.

7) Schimit not dealing with an out of control Keith Rogenski. Rogenski behavior of being abusive to parents and teachers was not dealt with. Rogenski's history of ignoring complaints of child abuse were disclosed. Rogenski has now been involved in lawsuits with a total of 16 million in settlements. Rogenski came to Aaron Becker's defense within days of the drowning of Ben Curry which mirrored his previous defense of a teacher found guilty of child abuse.

SRVUSD school board consist of nodding heads that failed in their job to hold this administration to any standards of behavior or accountability. Schmitt was a man in search of a high salary before retirement and he found a gullible school district board that made his dream come true.

Posted by Underdog
a resident of Danville
on Apr 3, 2020 at 7:49 am

Really, now?

Now more than ever our education community needs a strong leader. While other district Sups are rallying for their students and families, Schmitt decides to pack up his stuff and call it quits? He got what he came for:

Posted by Parent and Voter
a resident of Danville
on Apr 3, 2020 at 8:01 am

Board Members Marvel and Hurd who helped selected Schmitt and praised him are part of the PROBLEM. Schimitt and his HR person were not liked by teachers or staff. And during his tenure there were a number of problems, including the death of a student and the subsequent lawsuit.
Schmitt was unresponsive to problems and pushed his own Social Agenda rather then have students actually learn the basics.
My fear is that the School Board will once again make a bad decision in selecting the next Superintendent. We want an Educator, not a Social Activist.

Posted by Susan
a resident of Sycamore Valley Elementary School
on Apr 3, 2020 at 9:36 am

I can not believe he is leaving in a time of crisis, but I am not surprised. He was never here for the teachers, parents, or students, he was in it for the huge paycheck. I think the entire board needs to be removed and start over. They obviously can't make a good decision.

Posted by CommitteeNeeded
a resident of Danville
on Apr 3, 2020 at 9:45 am

We need to step in with a formal petition of "no confidence" with this elected school board to prevent them from hiring and repeating their mistakes of the last several hires. I believe the parents of the community need to form their own committee- without our trustees hand picking "favorites" among the community which serve as district mouth pieces to mirror their agenda. We have a lot of educated and intelligent people in this community that need to now step up and be active in this process-- your voice is needed. These people have had years to get it right and test out their wings- they simply can not lead a district of this size. Join the Parents of SRVUSD group on Facebook and get the real scoop-- and hear from real parents that are in the know.

Posted by SRVUSD Teacher and grandmother
a resident of Danville
on Apr 4, 2020 at 11:50 am

To that superintendent I say “Goodbye! Don’t let the door hit you as you run out.” First of all, many of our kids do well in this district because of their family support. We did well long before he arrived. To give a superintendent credit for test scores and any success our students earn is ridiculous. As a teacher, I see how hard many of my students work to achieve their successes. Yes, we teachers play a part; however, their families are involved and supportive. Having this current superintendent has been a nightmare. Don’t give him or the board credit for anything. We knew what he and they were up to very quickly after Mr S. arrived. Additionally, Ben Curry was my student. I will never forget or forgive.

Posted by Alamom3
a resident of Alamo
on Apr 4, 2020 at 1:53 pm

Anyone who thinks this board is serving any of us just need to watch the latest special school board meeting where Rachel Hurd throws our teachers under the bus and ALL of them pat themselves on the back for hiring this Superintendent in addition to publicly bashing a parent who spoke up at public comment. The ONLY board member that asked for transparency in the new hire salary was Mr. Marvel- who admitted this will be his 4th time conducting a search with the hired firm... they shared a chuckle together as the guy from the company said, “You’re getting good at this.” Congrats to the Superintendent on your next chapter- the turn over rate this board has speaks volumes of their leadership...

Posted by Teacher
a resident of Monte Vista High School
on Apr 4, 2020 at 4:59 pm

Hopefully, this will have a trickle down effect to weed out any current principal(s) whose only reason for taking said position is to use the job as a stepping stone to get to the district level without any regard for the staff and students. Maybe getting rid of an incompetent superintendent will shake things up in a good way!

Posted by Dad
a resident of Danville
on Apr 4, 2020 at 8:30 pm

Rick's most recent claim to fame is an eight million dollar payout because of being negligent which resulted in the death of a student. So yes Rick does have a legacy but it is not something to be proud of. Rick's failure to act on a warning by a teacher resulted in the death of a 15 year old boy.

I hope Rick never forgets the words that Mr Matthews said in the Nov 2017 board meeting "I am a Christian and I will not lie to the parents of a drowned child, I will tell them it was a financial decision that resulted in the death of their child". PE teacher Mr Matthews had just been hailed a hero because along with a life guard had saved a drowning 9th grade PE student in a class of 47. Ben Curry died 6 months after this board meeting in a PE class of 57 students.

So thank you Rick for retiring because a man that choose to ignore those words is not a fit to be anywhere near my children. A shame that the school board members who were also present when Mr Matthews voiced those words do not also have the decency to go away.

Posted by Mark
a resident of Danville
on Apr 8, 2020 at 9:01 am

Rick Schmitt is running now after two settlements one for 8 million and the other 625 thousand dollars along with more details being released on how terrible this district handles accountability.

I am sure at some point the details involved with the Curry's lawsuit will also show a screwed up investigation done by SRVUSD. I do know that Aaron Becker is super tight with the SRVHS principal Jason Krolikowski who is also named in the most recent settlement. Jason will probably get moved into SRVUSD administration like a middle school principal did after having affairs with his subordinates. SRVUSD is great a protecting a culture of no accountability.

Posted by Awful precedent
a resident of San Ramon
on Apr 8, 2020 at 7:15 pm

Given that this court filing below clearly states he hid 13,000 pages of documents from the court system for an extended period of time because the District failed to disclose them, he should be fired, have no pension, and in fact should be fined for his outrageous actions. Instead of basking in an all expense paid lavish 'retirement,' the Board should report his actions to the District Attorney.

Web Link

Posted by Sarah
a resident of San Ramon
on Apr 10, 2020 at 1:24 pm

Brick and Mortar schools are obsolete, costly and gross carbon polluters....the future is here and it is internet education from home.

We no longer need over paid and over privileged school superintendents, swimming pool deaths, foot ball injuries, teachers, costly maintenance, union contracts, ugly Stalinist building architecture.

The infrastructure is huge, ungainly, unjustified and a blight on the community and landscape.

Posted by Awful precedent
a resident of San Ramon
on Apr 10, 2020 at 5:29 pm

Distance learning is the way to go.

I read that the boy in the James Bond-parody controversy was subjected to a nearly 3 hour interrogation by school administrators. He was even threatened with the police arriving at his home with a search warrant. Read page 12 through 16 here Web Link

Meanwhile, the school administrators at SRVUSD hold James Bond fundraisers for SRV schools, printing pictures with logos including with real and photographs of guns and all like this one Web Link yet they have the audacity to interrogate a kid over a James Bond parody video clip?

I believe that the parents should have filed a criminal complaint against the school administrators for false imprisonment because of this interrogation. Hopefully the parents can still pursue criminal charges.

Posted by Tim
a resident of San Ramon
on Apr 12, 2020 at 9:05 pm

SRVUSD takes no action against Aaron Becker the teacher responsible for the death of a student from drowning while under his supervision, and then teachers from the same school threaten, harass, bully and interrogate a student for making a video. SRV High School what message are you sending out to the community? SRVUSD board members this type of conduct from teachers is acceptable? No accountability and no responsibility for teachers is what I am hearing loud and clear.

Posted by Parent
a resident of Danville
on Apr 13, 2020 at 11:55 am

SRVUSD is filled with bullies in the administration. Starting at the top and flowing down. Rick Schmitt failed to stop the rumors about Ben Curry's drowning because the idea that Ben killed himself kept community pressure off the district. Keith Rogenski, Assistant Superintendent did not suspend during the investigation Aaron Becker even with the video evidence that Arron was staring at his phone during the class and never looked in the pool to insure everyone was out. SRV High principal, Jason Krolikowski denied a request from Ben's friends to tie ribbons around the school on the 6 month anniversary of Ben's death. Jason amoral decision to not allow the students to honor Ben's life is disgusting. But once I heard that Jason and Aaron relationship is best friends versus supervisor and subordinate I understood Jason's reaction to Ben's friends request. On the one year anniversary of Ben's death, Ben's friends did not ask for approval but followed their hearts with honoring Ben's life on SRV High campus with lots of ribbons and pictures scattered around the campus. I am proud of the Danville community that attended Ben's family 1 year memorial event at the Danville library. My son told me that the 1 year memorial event was never announced or mentioned at SRV High. SRVUSD wants the community to forget Ben Curry died at SRV High in their swimming pool because he was abandoned by Aaron Becker.

But all of this pales in comparison to the disgusting fact that SRV High did not call Ben's parents to inform them that Ben was in an ambulance going to Kaiser after being found in the bottom of their pool. Kaiser hospital in Walnut Creek called Ben's mom to inform her that they had her son after being found in the pool at SRV high. I can not look at Krolikowski with out getting ill at the fact a mom learned from Kaiser that her son was dead. I have gotten phone calls for the most minor of events that have happened at my son's school yet Jason believed that the Curry's did not deserve a phone call when Ben was placed into an ambulance and taken off campus. Jason is a coward and a bully who showed his true colors after the death of a child in his care.

Posted by Amy
a resident of San Ramon
on May 2, 2020 at 2:22 pm

When he was Superintendent in San Dieguito, I knew him to be unethical! I am sorry that you got our trash.

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