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Federal Way Public Schools superintendent offered job in Oklahoma City; UPDATE: Community members weigh in via Facebook
Federal Way Public Schools Superintendent Rob Neu said he has been offered to take over the superintendent position with the Oklahoma City Public Schools.
The Oklahoma City school district will vote to accept Neu's appointment during its board meeting on Monday night, Neu told the Mirror on Saturday. If approved, he is expected to announce his decision during the Federal Way school board meeting on Tuesday night.
Neu's decision to leave Federal Way came on the heels of Federal Way school board member Tony Moore's conviction on seven counts of felony theft on Friday. However, Neu said his decision to leave the district was based on what is best for him and his family, and Moore's legal woes did not impact his decision.
Neu did not say when he will make the transition.
"There is still work to do to complete the process," he said. "But I believe all parties are committed to finalizing the process as soon as possible."
Neu added he is "honored" that the Oklahoma City school board will select him as the district's next superintendent.
"The energy and the excitement in the city is incredible," he said. "The Metropolitan Area Projects (MAPS), a series of one-cent tax increases, has rebuilt downtown and renovated the schools. It's breathtaking to see what has been accomplished. It's an amazing opportunity for me and my family to be part of such a positive, forward thinking community."
Federal Way school board director Claire Wilson said Neu's move will be a loss for the district.
"If Rob accepts the Oklahoma City position, it will be Federal Way's loss and Oklahoma City's gain," she said. "As a Federal Way school board director, and a parent, I would hate to see him leave the district."
Wilson said Neu is an "educational leader who makes decisions with students at the center and the focus on what's in the best interest of all students."
Wilson added Neu is a "cutting edge, change agent who understands what students need to know and be prepared for in order to be successful in this increasingly complex and competitive global economy."
Wilson noted Neu's focus on Advanced Placement and Standards Based Grading has changed the access, opportunity, pathway and the trajectory for many students in the district from "cradle to college."
As news began circulating that Neu's departure for Oklahoma City was increasingly likely, The Mirror asked community members to share their thoughts on Facebook:
Jessica Lane: Does this mean we can get a better grading system? And maybe some better programs (to) be integrated into the schools to help struggling students, or to provide enrichment to students needing to be challenged?
Audrey Hoover: I think it's pretty crappy he comes in, screws up the grading systems multiple times and then leaves with no solution or remorse. Also for Fed Way parents to find out via the Oklahoma paper is not cool nor the qualities of a leader, but more like a coward!
Dara Mandeville: I will refrain from commenting what I really want to say. I just think our district is in turmoil with all the changes and he was a HUGE part in creating them. We are nowhere close to being out of the woods and he takes off. So glad I only have 4 more years of this BS!!!!!
Cory Bennett: Poor graduation rates, jacked up grading systems, a $40k raise 'because Kent is the same size and pays it'...do I need to go on? Let's add Neu to the deport list with Bieber. I could go on and on and on.
Alissa Frederick: He didn't support students, staff or parents. He showed up late and (didn't) stay for questions at the parent programs I have gone to, and took a ridiculously large pay raise. Good luck Oklahoma.
Jim Knapp: They should install a revolving door...
The Mirror will update this story when more information becomes available.