HELIX HIGH SCHOOL -- Helix High School and the Grossmont Union High School District have settled the charter dispute that had threatened to end Helix High's independent status.
In a lengthy 12 point settlement, Helix Executive Director Doug Smith agreed to retire and both sides agreed to a five year extension of the charter and a number of steps to improve the district's access to information about Helix High's operation. The district will have a representative on the committee appointed to search for Smith's successor. The settlement also bound both sides to comment only jointly on the agreement. In a joint press release, both sides expressed a desire to move on after what was a painful public spat between two education entities.
GUHSD Board President Robert Shield stated, “I appreciate all of the effort the Helix Board has invested in arriving at a positive conclusion for the students, parents, and the rest of the Helix community. I am convinced that the Helix Board members are strong advocates for quality education at Helix. This agreement represents a new era of leadership. I am pleased to support a five-year renewal of the Helix Charter.”
Helix Charter Board President Brian Kick states, “We are pleased to be moving forward and desire to build a positive working relationship with the Grossmont Union High School District. I am optimistic that this will significantly benefit our students. The Helix Board will make certain that our future Executive Director continues our tradition of excellence and innovation in education.”
Helix High was hit by a string of incidents involving sexual misconduct between teachers, staff and students. Four teachers were convicted of sex crimes involving students between December 2006 and September 2008. Most recently, a Helix administrator was investigated and charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor in an incident involving a 16-year-old old girl traveling alone on a bus from San Diego to Oregon without guardian or parental permission.
The full settlement document is attached here: MOU Settlement Agreement.pdf