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Interim Brick Schools Chief’s Contract Extended to End of 2015

Richard Caldes (Photo: Daniel Nee)

Richard Caldes (Photo: Daniel Nee)

The contract for interim Brick schools superintendent Richard Caldes has been extended through the remainder of 2015, a move recommended by Todd C. Flora, the interim Ocean County Executive Superintendent.

The Board of Education approved the extension at a special meeting held Monday night.

“We would like to see stability restored in this district,” said Board President Sharon Cantillo. “We were very, very strongly advised that we do this. I really believe, if we waited until June 25 and people voted ‘no,’ we would be scrambling. I believe that the county superintendent gave us good advice.”

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Caldes’ contract had initially been set to expire July 31. The measure Monday night extends it through Dec. 31.

Caldes will earn the equivalent of a $177,468 salary while serving as interim superintendent, just shy of the state-allowed maximum salary of $177,500. He will retain the duties he had in his previous position of Educational Specialist.

Those duties he said are “intertwined” with the superintendent position. Before being named interim superintendent in the wake of the arrest of former superintendent Walter Uszenski, Caldes said he performed many administrative functions including evaluations, interviews with teacher applicants and handling union grievances.

In his revised role: “I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing, which was both” the superintendent and Educational Specialist jobs, Caldes said

Board member Susan Suter abstained from voting in favor of extending Caldes’ contract because she said she had not been given notice that it was to appear on Monday night’s meeting agenda.

“I don’t know what the county superintendent said,” said Suter. “He didn’t say anything to me.”