News Section: Schools and Education
ALJ Says Gagnon Shouldn't be Fired
Recommends reinstatement and back pay
BRADENTON – Administrative Law Judge Lynne Quimby-Pennock recommended that Robert Gagnon, an assistant superintendent suspended indefinitely by the Manatee County School District, not be fired over his role in the Rod Frazier sexual abuse scandal.
In her recommended order, Quimby-Pennock said that the district failed to demonstrate that Gagnon violated any specific statute, rule or policy.
"There was no direct, non-hearsay evidence that Respondent knowingly failed to perform his duties," she wrote, adding that he should be reinstated and given back pay.
Gagnon was recently acquitted on charges that he failed to report allegations of child abuse by Frazier, a parent teacher liason and assistant football coach at Manatee High, to the Florida Department of Children and Families hotline, as required by state statute.
Gagnon, a former Assistant Principal at Lakewood Ranch and Principal at Manatee High, briefly served as interim superintendent when Tim McGonegal resigned after admitting that he'd misled the board regarding multimillion dollar budget inaccuracies.
“We are in receipt of the decision of the Administrative Law Judge and we are in the process of reviewing it to determine what further course of action should be taken on behalf of the school district,” Manatee School District Superintendent Rick Mills said in a statement following the release of the recommended order.
The school board will decide Gagnon's ultimate fate at an upcoming meeting.
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