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'No Magic Wand,' Says Thurmond

DeKalb schools' interim superintendent holds his first meeting.

Newly-appointed interim school superintendent Michael Thurmond wasted no time on Monday night as he held his first meeting with board members at the district's Stone Mountain headquarters.

“I do not have a magic wand,” Thurmond said, "but every day we will come with one goal in mind: to become better and to inspire and educate our children.”

He joins the DeKalb School District at a difficult time - his predecessor's sudden departure, probation from SACS, and a continuing struggle to maintain accreditation. 

Thurmond promised to restore the reputation of DeKalb's schools, according to the AJC.

The nine-member school board, some of whom have only been on the job about a month, is hoping to avoid being removed by Governor Nathan Deal.

Parent Willie Pringle told Thurmond, “our school system needs healing, and since you are at the helm, I’m praying for you.”

“The question is: How badly do we want it and how much are we willing to sacrifice to achieve it?” Thurmond asked the audience.

“They are difficult, persistent problems I hope you will seriously address,” board member Nancy Jester told the superintendent.

Thurmond's detractors are complaining about his employment contract, which is giving him an annual salary of $275,000 as well as $2,600 a month in expenses. 

Related articles on Tucker Patch:
School Superintendent Getting 275K Salary
DeKalb Schools Placed on Probation
PTA President Lambasts School Board Members

Guy Midvale February 13, 2013 at 06:27 PM
Can I complain about his employment contract without being a detractor? I really do wish him well. I would be glad to see the board pick someone who is not an "educrat" if their motivation were not purely to save their jobs. I know he is focused right now on perfecting & rehearsing his script for the State BOE meeting, but I am very interested to see what he does to change the culture of corruption, incompetence, and laziness in the central office. The problems in the DCSD are multifaceted and removing a few of the leaders will not change the course of the ship which was properly labeled "a long, slow flush".

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