Former Southbridge School Committee member and Chairman Patricia Woodruff has spoken out about her resignation to reporter Brian Lee of The Worcester Telegram.
In the article titled, Southbridge School Committee chairwoman quits, Ms. Woodruff expands upon the statement she made at Tuesday night’s meeting.
At the time she said, “It appears to me the politics of the school committee have overtaken the true mission of this committee. There seems to be a prevailing opinion of the current majority of the school committee that this would be cured by my absence. While I do not share this opinion, I feel it is only fair to our children, who should be the true focus of our actions, to allow the majority to have their way. I therefore resign from the committee to be effective at the conclusion of this meeting. I hope that this gesture will encourage the remaining members to focus on what is important, the youth of our community.”
The Telegram article states, “In an interview, Ms. Woodruff singled out committee members Tanja Dominko, Jill Congdon and Erin Quinney as wanting to have her removed as chairwoman…. Ms. Woodruff said it was evident the committee didn't trust her and thought she didn't share information up front.”
“’I was being told a committee member was telling the public that I was a liar,’ Ms. Woodruff said. ‘And they kept telling people they were going to oust me. I can't deal with that stuff.’ Ms. Woodruff explained that members have been upset with her ever since she declined to put survey material on a meeting agenda. She said it hadn't been voted on in a subcommittee.
’They brought it up to be on the agenda, so I backed up and gave the gavel over to the vice chairman because I didn't want to be a part of it, because I wasn't 100 percent sure we were breaking the Open Meeting Law or not,’ Ms. Woodruff said.
Ms. Woodruff said she sought a still-pending legal ruling on the matter.”
The article goes on to note, “Ms. Congdon and Ms. Quinney told Ms. Woodruff they didn't think Ms. Woodruff should be chairman because her three children attend Catholic school, according to Ms. Woodruff…. After receiving additional e-mails from the upset members during the past two weeks, she said, she resolved it was time to leave.”