After less than three months as president and CEO of Chavez Huerta K-12 Preparatory Academy in Pueblo, Hal Stevens has resigned.
During an “emergency” meeting Saturday, Sept. 17, Chavez Huerta board members announced Stevens’ resignation and appointed former board president and CEO Richard Duran to serve as interim CEO.
Board President Stephen Varela said Stevens submitted an email stating his resignation on Friday morning without specifying his reasons for resigning.
“The interim CEO term should probably not exceed 60 days, but we don’t want to put a time limit on it because Dr. Duran wants enough time to be able to get our finances in order and figure out where everything’s at,” Varela said.
Community members called for the resignation of Stevens and Varela at a previous board meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 9, citing a series of staffing changes and the creation of a “hostile work environment.” Staffing changes during Stevens’ brief tenure included the firing of an HR director who had worked at the school for 14 years and the resignations of multiple teachers.
More on Chavez Huerta:Chavez Huerta community members call for resignations of new CEO, board president
During the Sept. 17 meeting, board member Angela Giron said the board had “made a mistake” in hiring Stevens and issued a personal apology to the Chavez Huerta community. Giron said Stevens’ two months as CEO resulted in a decline of staff, parent and community trust in the school.
“We lost a lot of teachers,” Giron said. “I am trying to get our count. Did we lose students who were going to come here who didn’t? It’s interesting because those are the things we have to live with that are on our shoulders as a board.”
There was no public comment scheduled for the meeting.
More:Chavez Huerta teachers call on board members to resign over political event, endorsements
Pueblo Chieftain reporter James Bartolo can be reached by email at [email protected].