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After turbulence, transition, Oxbridge Academy plans leadership change


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Oxbridge Academy Head of School John Klemme stepping down to return to teaching English there in June 2018

Oxbridge Academy Head of School John Klemme, promoted to the post in 2016 after previous leader Bob Parsons left in scandal, will step down in 14 months to return to teaching English at the private high school.

Oxbridge trustees plan to conduct “a worldwide search” to fill the job, the school announced Wednesday.

Klemme, who is 67, was a founding member of the faculty in 2011 and was promoted to academic dean and then to head of school.

The school revamped its leadership last year, after reporting by The Palm Beach Post prompted Palm Beach billionaire Bill Koch, the school’s founder, to order an internal investigation. Past and present employees at the time described a working atmosphere fraught with firings, high turnover, accusations of sexual harassment and an emphasis tilting from academics to athletics.

Parsons, hand-picked by Koch to be the founding chief executive and president, was fired and the contracts of the school’s athletic director and football coach were not renewed. Ulle Boshko, the woman who sparked the investigation by alleging Parsons demoted her for refusing sexual advances, also was fired.

Klemme was moved up as a steadying hand for the school, which is at 3151 N. Military Trail.

“Serving as head of school at Oxbridge has been an honor and an incredible experience for me both personally and professionally,” Klemme said. “But ultimately my heart belongs in the classroom, with the students, and sharing my passion for English studies. In addition, my announcement at this time allows a deliberate process to go forward in the coming months to identify a leader for the school who can serve Oxbridge ideally for the next decade and beyond.”

“John Klemme has done a remarkable job of sustaining the academic excellence that makes Oxbridge so unique,” said David Rosow, board of trustees president and chief executive. “The proof lies with the outstanding list of top-tier college acceptances by our graduating class this year.”



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