School Board Places Superintendent Matt Hill on Paid Administrative Leave

Dr. Matt Hill back in 2015 addresses staff (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

On Thursday, June 8, Burbank Board of Education President Steve Ferguson sent a district-wide email stating that the Board of Education has placed Superintendent Dr. Matt Hill on administrative leave.

This action comes after the Board called for a special closed session meeting on Wednesday night, with one of the items on the agenda being the “Public Employee Performance Evaluation Pursuant to Government Code §54957 (Superintendent of Schools)”.

No details have been given because the Board says it is a confidential personnel matter.

Back in July of 2022, the Board voted to give Hill a new contract with a retroactive raise even though his current contract did not expire until the end of the 2023 school year. His new contract is set to expire in 2025. Transparent California reported his 2021 salary with benefits to be $314,050.47.

According to his contract, if the Board votes to terminate Hill at a later time without cause, they will still have to pay his salary for one year, including health and welfare benefits.

While the reasons for placing him on leave have yet to be made public, the District has been suffering from many departures, including 10 of the 19 Principals in the past two years and several administrators also leaving. The District has also failed to get a Parcel Tax approved by voters in recent years.

Dr. John Paramo, Assistant Superintendent of Educational Services, will be acting as Superintendent until the Board takes future action.

Here is the full text of the letter sent on Thursday afternoon:

Dear Members of the Burbank Unified Educational Community:

At its special meeting yesterday, June 7, 2023, the Board took action to place Superintendent Matt Hill on paid administrative leave effective immediately. Know that the Board did not take this action lightly. We also know that many of you will have questions. This action, however, is a confidential personnel matter. As a result, our answers to those questions will be limited to respect the Superintendent’s employee privacy rights. 

Dr. John Paramo, Assistant Superintendent of Educational Services, has agreed to serve as Acting Superintendent. Dr. Paramo knows our District and has over 30 years in education with a demonstrated commitment to student achievement and equity. The Board is confident in Dr. Paramo’s ability to lead the District in this moment and deeply appreciates his willingness to do so. 

The Board will discuss and address the state of the District and its leadership at its regular meeting on June 15, 2023. 

In Service,

Steve Ferguson

Board President

    BurCal Apartments8715


    1. Has anyone reviewed the legality of expending more than $850 per day in pay and benefits to Dr. Hill while he has been terminated from his employment? I would imagine doing so, if the firing was with cause, would violate Cal. Civ. Proc. Code § 526a (a waste of public funds and resources). Has the school district considered having our Third Branch of government review the matter to determine if the payment can be stopped now? A judge with subject matter and personal jurisdiction could examine the facts in camera and rule if such a provision in an employment contract can be deemed invalid. For the benefit of our community, I would hope that the Burbank School District would ask their attorney to examine that option.

      • He’s on paid leave- not terminated (yet). He’s in a contract, and I’m sure the district has spoken to legal counsel. This ain’t Mayberry, despite what some residents still cling to.

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