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Something odd is happening in Somerville Public Schools. According to inside sources, the district’s former superintendent, Timothy Teehan, has been largely absent since the end of 2022, although he didn’t announce his retirement to the Monmouth [Correction: Somerset] County school community until earlier this past month. But everyone knew he was gone—after all, the district’s school board had already appointed an interim superintendent, Richard Brockel, on April 4th.
Last week, during a regular school board meeting, the Board made a new appointment:
“RESOLVED , that the Board of Education approves the appointment of Dr. Timothy Teehan to the position of Human Resources Director, effective July 1, 2023 and terminating at the close of business on August 31, 2023, at which time Dr. Teehan will resign for purposes of retirement.“
Here’s the oddity: There is no position of Human Resources Director at Somerville and, according to the NJ School Boards Association, every position in a school district requires a job description that must be approved by the school board.
Somerville does have an organizational chart. There is no Human Resources Director on it.
Also, board agendas that list new hires typically include salaries. While Teehan was making $171,660 a year as a superintendent, there is no salary listed for his new two-month appointment. Meanwhile, Brockel, as an interim, is making $700 a day; depending on how many days he works that’s over $200K per year. Seems like a lot for a district with 2,500 students.
Why would the Somerville Board of Education hire its very recent superintendent for a position that may not exist?
Some are speculating that the board agreed to hire Teehan for the summer in order allow him to qualify for a higher pension.
NJER asked the Somerville district office for a copy of the job description for Human Resources Director. The district has not responded. We’ll update to reflect any further communication.