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Wendt, Former School Board Settle Lawsuit Over Severance Pay

The settlement drops the Ankeny, Iowa district's lawsuit against former Superintendent Matthew Wendt and cuts in half the amount of transition pay he will receive from Ankeny Schools.

Matthew Wendt and his former school district in Ankeny, Iowa have settled over the amount of severance pay Wendt is entitled to, the Ankeny school board announced Monday night.

Following a closed session, the Ankeny board voted 7-0 to approve the settlement with Wendt. It cuts the amount of his severance package in half, from a year's pay to six months salary. The total is about $88,000 or $14,709 a month; down from the previous severance package of $176,000.

Wendt and the district will pay their own legal fees. The settlement also says that Wendt, along with the school board, must not publicly disparage the others. A breach of that agreement would pay $14,709 per comment.

The district's lawsuit had accused when members voted in May to amend his contract prior to his resignation to take a position in the Oswego.

"It was important to resolve this matter with Dr. Wendt," said board president George Tracy in a statement. "This settlement saved the district a significant amount of money and allows the Ankeny school district to turn its attention to more pressing educational issues. Both parties have realized the value of putting this matter in the past and moving forward."

Wendt said in a statement: "I am pleased to have a settlement reached, I feel the final resolution represents a compromise that puts the matter in the past and is clearly in everyone's best interest. This agreement allows my family and me to move forward. I have many fond memories of the five years serving as the Ankeny superintendent and I have nothing but best wishes for the school district."

Marty September 11, 2012 at 10:11 PM
Don't forget about the Terry Tamblyn era a while back. We gave him a big check when he left also
Kristine Neumann September 11, 2012 at 11:12 PM
"Wendt and the district will pay their own legal fees". Who exactly is "the district"?
russ harrison September 11, 2012 at 11:52 PM
Jane> Jesus does not have a Doctorate degree and a battery of attorneys....
Mark Z September 12, 2012 at 12:09 AM
The district is the Ankeny School District, who began the legal actions against Wendt.
J Goodsmith September 12, 2012 at 02:46 PM
Dale - I'm sorry you are so uninformed. Go to the Des Monies Register web site, download the contact and read it. The original agreement offered 2 years 'transition' if he left for any reason. The amended contract offered him to continue working for Ankeny, or a one year transition payment if - repeat if, he acted before July 2012 - which he did. I'm more upset that he decided to end the nonsense and settle, I think this would have been tossed out of court by the judge. What you have is a Board in Ankeny that could not stand the heat after it became public that they had to pay him.

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