On sick leave since September, South Shore Vocational Technical High School Superintendent James Kosko may not return to work before he calls it quits.
James Kosko, the superintendent of South Shore Vocational Technical High School, plans to retire March 24, the regional school committee announced Wednesday.
Kosko has been on sick leave since Sept. 19 and may not return to work before he retires, school committee Chairman James Rodick said.
Kosko went home sick from work on Sept. 19, the morning before the school committee took a no-confidence vote in him. At the time, the committee voiced displeasure that Kosko failed to properly explain a discrepancy in the district’s new contract with the teachers union.
Committee members David Kneeland of Cohasset and Lenwood Thompson of Abington refused to support that no-confidence vote because Kosko was absent and unable to defend himself. That was believed to be the first such absence in Kosko’s nine years as superintendent.
On Wednesday, Rodick said Kosko has remained out with a serious illness, which he would not disclose because of medical privacy regulations.
“He sounds OK,” Rodick said. “I can’t get into details. It’s wait-and-see.”
In a letter to the school committee, made public Wednesday night, Kosko notified the school committee that he will not know whether he can return to work until after his next doctor’s appointment, in January.
“It’s an unusual situation for the school to be in,” Kneeland said. “We may never see him again.”
Kosko began working at South Shore Votech in 1985 as a counselor. He moved up through the ranks to become director of the school’s Abington campus, which closed in 1992.
He then served as principal and assistant director of the Hanover campus until he succeeded James Hager as superintendent in 1998.
The school committee decided that it will not form a superintendent search committee until Kosko has filed retirement papers.
Assistant Director Charles Homer has served as the acting superintendent in Kosko’s absence. On Wednesday, he was given a $50-per-day pay raise to compensate him for the extra work.
The raise will be revoked if Kosko returns to work, and it is expected to cost the eight-town school district no more than $10,000.
Andrew Lightman may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.