"Longtime Metco director says she was forced out" by James Vaznis and Andy Rosen Globe Staff December 26, 2016
As the Metco desegregation program celebrated its 50th anniversary this year, a sensitive dispute between its board and its longtime executive director has unfolded behind the scenes.
The dispute has centered around whether Jean McGuire — long the public face of the groundbreaking program — should step down after 43 years of leading Metco.
The issue culminated in September, when the group’s board, after many months of negotiating with McGuire, said it had reached a retirement agreement with her. Board members then announced her departure.
But McGuire, in an interview last week, insisted she was forced out.
“I did not resign,” said McGuire, 85. “They fired me.”
She said she still feels insulted by the circumstances of her exit. McGuire said she had hoped to stay for two more years, but the organization opted instead to pay her for that time and continue on without her. She said many of her family members have worked into their 90s, and she feels she has more to offer and still has lots of energy, noting she swims daily.
Charles Walker, president of the Metco board, said leadership change was necessary to move the organization in a new direction and to address some pressing issues, such as fund-raising and finding a new location for its Roxbury offices.
The board has not named a replacement for the organization, which coordinates the placement of non-white students in suburban schools....