Dr. Carmen Balgobin will serve until Dr. Scott Fritz is ready to return.
The Volusia County School Board has appointed Dr. Carmen Balgobin to serve as interim superintendent until Aug. 28 to allow Dr. Scott Fritz to take about eight weeks of medical leave for cancer treatments and recovery.
Balgobin is the current deputy superintendent, and was appointed to her position on Jan. 14. Previously in her career, she worked as the executive area director for the School Transformation Office in Orange County Public Schools and the executive director of Charter and Educational Choices in the Osceola County School District, according to a press release.
The School Board approved the appointment during a virtual meeting on Tuesday, July 7. Fritz believes he will be back by Aug. 14, but the board chose to extend Balgobin's appointment for an extra two weeks in case his recovery takes longer than expected.
The board also unanimously approved a motion to allow Fritz to use his accrued sick leave during this time rather than emergency leave pay, as he has enough to cover the time off.
School Board Attorney Ted Doran said there is a provision for emergency leave pay in Fritz's contract, but that the board had the discretion to pursue granting it or not. He said the district has not had to grant emergency leave pay in at least the last 20 years.
The motion was made by School Board Member Jamie Haynes, who said she didn't want the public to misconstrue why the board opted for Fritz using his sick leave.
"We do care and we want him to take this chance to get well but I believe we need to treat this as we’re treating every other employee because the time is there," she said.
The board also moved Fritz's evaluation from taking place at the Aug. 4 school board meeting to the Oct. 13 workshop.