COLCHESTER — The Board of Education voted Friday to accept the resignation of superintendent Jeffrey Burt and to form a search committee to find a new superintendent.
While the board did not give a reason for Burt’s resignation at the meeting, it comes after the board has held multiple meetings to discuss a formal complaint made against an administrator.
Through a Freedom of Information Act, CT Examiner obtained a complaint filed against Burt on January 31, 2022. The complaint, made by Principal Matthew Peel of Bacon Academy, described multiple instances of “workplace bullying,” including meetings in which Burt allegedly spoke to him and other administrators in ways that were “rude and condescending” and in one instance in which he allegedly “yelled at us and pounded his fists on the table.”
“I do acknowledge that as my supervisor, he has the right to challenge me and push me in areas he would like to see growth. I have never felt like he had a vested interest in helping me grow though. He constantly and consistently addresses me in an aggressive manner with an accusatory, challenging and uncomfortable tone,” Peel wrote in the complaint. “Furthermore, his actions and treatment have left me feeling like he does not respect me, does not support my growth, judges me in an unfair, extreme, and unrealistic way, and does not value me as a member of the administrative team.”
Burt responded to the complaint in an email message to CT Examiner.
“In every situation there are two sides to the story. Unfortunately, due to my position and state laws I am unable to tell my side. However, I [am] proud of the fact that I have always acted in the best interests of Colchester PS students in all of my decisions,” Burt wrote.
Burt’s resignation will go into effect on June 30, 2022.
The board’s search committee will also conduct a search for a new Director of Pupil Services and Special Education and a new Business Director. The prior director of Pupil Services and Special Education, Kathleen Perry, resigned in March.
There will be a Board of Education meeting on Monday at 8 a.m. via Zoom to discuss the appointment of an interim superintendent.