After Bob Lofsted retired as principal of Lodi High School, the Lodi Unified School District on Monday appointed someone to temporarily fill the vacant seat.

With George Neely as the only trustee absent, the school board voted 6-0 during a closed session on Monday to name Adam Auerbach as interim principal of Lodi High School effective July 1. Auerbach currently serves as vice principal of Tokay High School, and before that served as an assistant principal at Lodi High.

Dozens of Tokay High teachers and parents attended a public comment section before the closed session, believing that the school board was planning to shuffle several high school administrators — including Tokay Principal Erik Sandstrom — in order to fill the Lodi High vacancy.

Board Member Ron Heberle said they were misinformed, as the board never considered transferring any high school principals to other school sites.

“They kind of jumped the gun a little bit,” Heberle said. “All it was is that we had an open administrative position at Lodi High that we have to fill, and we did.”

The school board only votes on personnel matters that involve promotions or job changes, Heberle said. If a school administrator were to move to another school but keep the same job, he said, the decision would rest with Superintendent Dr. Cathy Nichols-Washer.

Heberle was also quick to dispel rumors that the 9 a.m. meeting time was chosen in an attempt to prevent parents and teachers from protesting. Instead, the meeting time was chosen as it worked best with all the board members’ schedules, he said.

“We wanted to get together as early as possible to give everybody the earliest notification we can,” Heberle said.

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