After nine years as Superintendent of Mooresville Graded school district, Dr. Mark Edwards is departing for a vice president position with Discovery Education according to a press release by the company.
Mooresville Tribune also reported:
Edwards announced his plans at 10:45 a.m. during a meeting with the MGSD Board of Education. He has accepted a position as senior vice president of Discovery Education, a digital-based educational content provider, working in the company’s Charlotte office.
Edwards, 63, said he will leave the MGSD in August. He and his family will continue to live in Mooresville, where his son is a rising junior at Mooresville High School.
Sources inside the district say that Edwards’ departure coincides with questions about change orders and the rising costs for the performing arts center which he has been a proponent of.
Discovery Education has multiple partnerships in North Carolina, including the two largest districts, Wake and Charlotte.
The company offers digital textbooks, professional development, assessments and streaming digital media. The company’s offerings often target Science Technology Engineering and Math, commonly known as STEM.
Discovery Education has aligned their resources, namely their digital textbooks professional development and assessments, to support Common Core. Edwards also has ties to testing and publishing giant, Pearson.
Mooresville has long been known for experimenting on its student population with various programs, the latest being anything and everything ‘digital’. Edwards led a digital conversion in Mooresville that incorporated an expansive “1-to-1 computing” program.
It therefore arguably unsurprising that Edwards would move to a company aligned with Common Core products, as evidenced by his support of the standards in an article co-penned by former Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools Superintendent, Heath Morrison.
Edwards was hired in 2007 with an original end date of 2010. His contract was amended to end in 2012 but was renewed again through 2017. He was named Superintendent of the Year in 2013.
When hired, his contract stated that his salary would be “the maximum salary available from state funds”. That state salary was calculated at $123,840, with $47,423 in supplemental salary which brings his total compensation to $171,263.
The board reimbursed Edwards for his personal contribution to the North Carolina Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System at a rate of up to 6 percent of his annual salary.
Board stipulated $700 per month for travel expenses and Board will reimbursement for mileage outside of Mooresville.
Other perks in Edwards’ contract include an extra 22 vacation days per year. In addition to regular health insurance, the board gave Edwards $5,000 per year for the uninsured medical, dental and eye-care bills for his entire family including himself. The board also included paying for one medical exam per year.