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Colleen Lieggi, the principal of Ames School in Riverside, will receive a severance payment of $69,000 as part of her resignation agreement that was approved by the Riverside Elementary School District 96 Board of Education at a special meeting Thursday night.

Lieggi’s resignation as a District 96 employee will become effective June 30, and she will receive the $69,000 severance payment in one lump sum on July 1, 2013 or 10 days after receipt of her last paycheck for the 2012-13 year, whichever is later, according to the six-page resignation agreement.

The district also agreed to pay Lieggi’s health insurance premiums for one year should Lieggi choose to maintain her district-provided health insurance plan under the COBRA law. The agreement states if Lieggi obtains a job that provides health insurance prior to June 30, 2014 the district would no longer be required to pay her health insurance premiums.

Lieggi signed her resignation agreement Thursday after having three weeks to consider it. The agreement states that Lieggi consulted with an attorney before signing the agreement. By signing the agreement Lieggi waived any right to sue the district under federal law.

Lieggi has seven days to revoke the agreement should she choose to do so.

The school board voted 5 to 0 to accept the resignation agreement after meeting in closed session for about 15 minutes with District 96 Superintendent Jonathan Lamberson and its attorney, Stanley Eisenhammer. Board members Lisa Gaynor and Art Perry were out of the town and not at the meeting.

The school board attached a press release to the agreement but made no other public comments about it.

“Ms. Lieggi is leaving for personal circumstances and professional interests,” the press release stated. “The board of education would like to thank her for her 12 years of outstanding service to the children and families of District 96. Her dedication to excellence, constant improvement, and a child-centered learning experience make A.F. Ames Elementary School a great place to learn and teach. We wish her well in her future endeavors.”

A provision of the resignation agreement stated that Lieggi and the school board will cooperate in drafting a joint statement and “agree that no other statements will be made to the press or the public.”

The press release also included a statement from Lieggi, which mirrored an email announcing her resignation that she sent to Ames School parents Thursday afternoon.

“Circumstances require my departure in order to assist my daughters in their recovery process and pursue other professional interests,” she wrote. I believe I leave Ames Elementary School a better place than I found it and will miss the professional relationships that I enjoyed during my 12 years working in the district.”

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