Lisa Herring accepts buyout, becomes deputy superintendent of Charleston schools+

Lisa Herring meets Kevin Eakes (from left), Elizabeth Glover and Sonya Jones during a reception in June.

Lisa Herring is now the deputy superintendent of Charleston County School District.

The former chief academic officer and superintendent candidate accepted a buyout worth more than $220,000 from the school board late Friday.

Her new role “was created so that the District can continue to benefit from the skills and talent Dr. Herring has brought to our schools, while accommodating her desire for more flexibility to pursue other professional opportunities,” according to a statement from the school district.

Under the terms of her revised contract with the board, Herring will continue to earn a base salary of $140,000, plus benefits and no more than $3,000 worth of professional development opportunities. She will report solely to Superintendent Gerrita Postlewait and serve through June 30, 2016, when her contract expires. If Herring resigns before then, she will remain on the district’s payroll as a consultant for academic affairs.

In exchange for this offer, Herring agrees to “execute a general release of claims against CCSD, its Board of Trustees and each trustee individually, officers, employees and agents.”

When the contract expires next summer, the district will pay Herring a $45,000 severance package and up to $35,000 in attorneys’ fees incurred during the negotiation process.

The board approved the details of Herring’s settlement during a special meeting on Tuesday. Herring was given a noon Friday deadline to accept or decline their proposal.

As deputy superintendent, Herring’s new responsibilities include “providing advisement, guidance, resource information and insight for the planning, development and implementation of academic plans, instructional support and interventions for departments and schools” and any other duties that Postlewait may direct.

“It’s been a long conversation and I’m glad all parties involved have decided how we’re going to move forward to make this a successful school year,” said Board Chairwoman Cindy Bohn Coats. “We’ve got a lot of work to do and it’s time to focus on the kids.”

Herring did not return requests for comment from The Post and Courier.

The deal the board offered Herring is similar to the agreement reached with former Superintendent Nancy McGinley, who resigned last October and remained a paid consultant for the district through June 30.

The Charleston County School Board named Herring a superintendent candidate in March, along with Postlewait and Chief Financial Officer Michael Bobby. After Bobby withdrew from consideration, the board voted to launch a national search for McGinley’s replacement. Herring and Postlewait were both finalists for the position in June. While she was in the running for Charleston County Schools’ top job, Herring interviewed for a superintendent position with Birmingham (Ala.) City Schools. Herring also was a superintendent finalist in Birmingham, but ultimately, was not selected for the job.

Herring hired Nancy Bloodgood, the same attorney who represented McGinley during her split with the district, to renegotiate her contract soon after Postlewait’s appointment as Charleston County Schools’ superintendent in July.

“I have always been supportive of Dr. Herring and her role in this district,” said board member Michael Miller. “I’m happy that this resolution has been met. I’m saddened that it took us this long to get to this point, but now I’m ready to watch Dr. Herring and Dr. Postlewait work together to move our district forward and meet all of our academic needs.”

Reach Deanna Pan at 937-5764.