FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Superintendent Robert Runcie told the Broward School Board on Tuesday that he’s willing to step down from the post he’s held nearly a decade.
“If the environment is not as such that I can’t do my very best, I’m willing to discuss a path to a mutual agreement of separation,” he said.READ MORE: 3 Rushed To Area Hospitals Following Shooting At Aventura Mall
Runcie and School Board General Counsel Barbara Myrick were arrested last week.
The superintendent is accused of committing perjury during a grand jury hearing about school safety funding.
Myrick is charged with unlawful disclosure of statewide grand jury proceedings.
The decision to possibly step down was in marked contrast to a video statement Runcie released earlier Tuesday in which he indicated he would be exonerated and thanked everyone who has voiced support for him.
He also mentioned a statement from his lawyer last week, which said, “It’s a sad day in Broward County and across Florida when politics become more important than the interest of our students. Superintendent Runcie has fully cooperated with law enforcement through this statewide grand jury process.”
“I look forward to due process being followed, where individuals are treated fairly through the normal judicial system. I will continue to be transparent with the board with all of Broward County Public Schools, parents and with the entire community,” he said.
He added that his focus is on the district’s students, teachers, and staff.
“Our district is going through a difficult time right now. It is how we cope during these difficult times that shows our true character and makes us stronger. The most positive action that any of us can take now is to focus on our core mission of giving our students the best possible educational experience to prepare them for a successful future and to instill in them the confidence to stand up for what is right,” he said.
The charge against Runcie stems from testimony about school safety funding tied to the grand jury investigation into the 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.READ MORE: Miami-Dade Police Lieutenant Faces Rape Charges In Palm Beach County
The probe was launched after the 2018 Mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that claimed 17 lives.
Some Parkland parents blamed the superintendent for the tragedy, believing he missed warning signs.
Gov. Ron DeSantis ordered the grand jury investigation months following the massacre.
Prosecutors say Runcie spoke with witnesses in a case involving Broward County Public Schools former technology chief Tony Hunter, who is accused of steering a lucrative contract to a friend. And then Runcie is accused of denying he spoke to them while under oath.
Hunter was indicted in January and his criminal case is pending.
READ: Robert Runcie Indictment
Runcie’s arraignment is set for May 12.
On Tuesday, some school board members said they favored Runcie be suspended with pay while he handled his legal troubles.
But board member Lori Alhadeff, whose daughter was killed in the Stoneman Douglas massacre, called for Runcie to be terminated with cause.
“I will step aside so you can have the peace you are looking for,” Runcie told Alhadeff at the workshop.MORE NEWS: COVID In Florida: 3,977 New Cases, 66 Additional Deaths Reported Saturday
Board Chair Dr. Rosalind Osgood will work with an attorney on a separation agreement for Runcie that will be discussed at a board meeting Thursday.