A school superintendent abruptly resigned on Wednesday after parents became unhappy with many of his proposals, including mask mandates and bringing Critical Race Theory to the school.
News 12 in the Bronx reported that Dr. Martin Cox, superintendent at Clarkstown Central School resigned, citing “personal reasons.” The school board “very quickly voted 5 to 1 Tuesday night in support of his resignation without ever explaining to the community why he is leaving,” the outlet reported.
The outlet reported that Cox was allowed to resign instead of being fired, but repeatedly said it was unclear why he resigned. The outlet then proceeded to note numerous reasons why parents were unhappy with Cox’s leadership. From News 12:
He was seen as anti-justice and anti-police for his delayed response to a controversial presentation done by a student about the Black Lives Matter movement.
Parents were also critical of his decision to enforce a mask mandate for students and staff this year before the CDC and state Health Department did.
Parents got so outraged at a meeting that they had to end it after just 15 minutes, with parents yelling and refusing to wear masks.
Some parents applauded Tuesday night when they heard the announcement of his departure, although some did appreciate his work for their kids.
Some parents tell News 12 many disagreed with Cox’s COVID-19 and mask mandates and that there was concern over talk of bringing critical race theory into the school’s curriculum as well as diversity, equity and inclusion, or DEI, policies. “I don’t think Marty Cox really was connected to the soul of the community and in being disconnected that turned a lot of people off to him and his policies,” says Joe Solari, parent.
Journalist Christopher Rufo, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and writer at City Journal, wrote on Twitter that his sources told him that “parents banded together, filed FOIA requests, and pressured the board to oust him.”
In a statement, Cox said he was thankful for his time as superintendent.
“I wish our students the very best with all their educational endeavors, both now and in the future. In addition, I am thankful for our teachers, staff, and administrators, whose daily efforts make a positive impact for students,” he said, according to News 12.
The school board released its own statement thanking Cox and revealing that assistant superintendent for personnel Jeff Sobel would take over as the interim superintendent until a replacement could be found.
“Mr. Sobel has agreed to fill this leadership position until an Interim Superintendent or a new Superintendent is appointed,” the board wrote. “We remain confident that a new Superintendent for our district will be in place for the start of the 2022-23 academic year.”
The board added that the transition to a new superintendent wouldn’t stop the district from enacting policies to protect students and faculty from COVID-19 and various other issues facing students.
The Daily Voice reported that Cox had been superintendent since 2016.