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Eye on Annapolis

The Daily Record's Maryland state government blog

Foose declines state job after protests

Renee Foose, the former superintendent of the Howard County Schools system, has declined a position with the Maryland Department of Education one day after the state board approved her hire.

Dr. Renee Foose. (File)

Dr. Renee Foose. (File)

A spokeswoman for Gov. Larry Hogan said Wednesday evening that State Superintendent Karen Salmon told the governor’s staff that Foose declined the position at the end of the day Wednesday.

No reason was given for Foose turning down the job.

The announcement comes a day after the state board of education voted to approve Foose as the assistant state superintendent, assessment, accountability, and information technology. Her salary and start date had not been finalized as of the vote.

The salary range for the position was $92,333-$123,236.

But a public backlash against the hire soon followed the announcement of the board’s vote.

Foose, was ousted in May from her position as superintendent of the Howard County Public Schools system following a bitter dispute with that county’s board of education over her management style. The relationship prior to her negotiated retirement had deteriorated to the point that both Foose and the board filed lawsuits against each other.

Foose, who earned $273,000, and the board reached a settlement in which Foose would retire and the board would pay her more than $1.6 million, including an amount that would fully fund her retirement.

A spokeswoman for Hogan said the governor’s office received “dozens of calls” expressing opposition to the hiring of Foose by the state department. Hogan, who has no control over the hiring, expressed his concerns to Salmon.

“However, I am aware of the serious concerns raised by many Howard County School Board members, educators, parents and residents about Ms. Foose’s tenure as (Howard County) superintendent,” Hogan wrote in a letter to constituents. “I share these concerns, and hiring Ms. Foose is not a decision I would have made.”

Foose’s hiring was also opposed by 10 members of the Howard County delegation to the General Assembly.

“Your hiring of Dr. Renee Foose yesterday has sent a clear message to Howard County residents that you disregarded Howard County’s relationship  with Dr. Foose, the finding of the state’s ombudsman, and the opinion of the Board of Public Works,” the members of the delegation wrote in a letter to the state school board. The letter goes on to as the board to reconsider it’s vote.

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