Former Grand Rapids schools' superintendent sues district

Feb 28, 2013

Former Grand Rapids Public Schools Superintendent Bernard Taylor is suing the district for $330,600. Read the full complaint here.

Grand Rapids Attorney Katherine Kennedy filed the lawsuit in federal court Thursday afternoon on Taylor's behalf.

She says the school board has refused to pay Taylor the money he’s owed, citing claims of mismanagement and misconduct. She says those allegations include expenses for car washes and cell phone stipends.

“One allegation was that he was leading with an autocratic leadership style. Even if those things were true, which they are absolutely not, they still owe him all the money under the contract because the contract speaks for itself," Kennedy said.

Taylor ran Michigan’s fifth largest K-12 school district for five years. Taylor and some members of the school board did not get along very well.

Beginning in the spring of 2011, it became clear Taylor was looking for a new job. He agreed to resign that summer.

The school district would not comment on the case.

Kennedy says the lawsuit is a "last resort" after Taylor offered the parties work with an independent mediator. But she says the board refused.

Kennedy says Taylor is now the superintendent of East Baton Rouge school district, a position he started in the summer of 2012.