Check out this year’s Forest Park Community Guide!

Online edition –>

The principal of the Proviso Math and Science Academy who was suspended from his job nearly a month ago is no longer receiving a paycheck but is still employed by the district.

Melvin Berry was placed on paid administrative leave by Supt. Stan Fields on Sept. 27 for undisclosed reasons. Fields and other district officials have cited employee confidentiality laws in declining to explain the sanctions.

Berry has not yet met with the district for his due process hearing, Fields said. Therefore the board cannot take action with regard to his suspension.

As of Oct. 23 though, Berry is no longer receiving a salary, Fields said.

“We’ve not yet had the due process hearing scheduled,” Fields said. “We’re ready and have been for the last month.”

No action has been taken by the board since the suspension was levied.

Berry’s attorney, Lewis Myers, did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment. However, in a previous interview with the Review, Myers said his client intends to fight the administrative decision. Berry could not be reached for comment.

Meanwhile, the board did approve the hire of a new principal for the math and science academy.

Ed Moyer, formerly the school’s facilitator for Mathematics, Science and Humanities will return to Proviso as the new principal. Moyer is expected to begin work at the academy on Nov. 1, which is sooner than the projected start date of Jan. 1, 2007, offered by Fields earlier this month.

Moyer was introduced to the board on Oct. 23, though neither he nor the board members made any statements regarding the hire.

“I think Ed is exactly what the academy needs to stabilize its operation,” Fields said.

Moyer is returning to District 209 from the Illinois Math and Science Academy in Aurora, Ill.

Berry’s suspension is the second for an academy administrator since the school year began in August. Fields also suspended co-principal Richard Bryant for undisclosed reasons, and Bryant was terminated by the board on Sept. 25.

District officials never commented publicly on the issue, but one day prior to Bryant’s suspension, police received a complaint from the district that roughly $2,600 in student fees was missing. In the police report, witnesses name Bryant as the last person to handle the funds.