Information from the AJC was used in this report
Governor Nathan Deal will have plenty of applications to dig through as he selects six people to replace the suspended DeKalb County school board members.
More than 400 people applied for the positions by Wednesday’s deadline. Since the school board can’t operate with its three current members, the governor’s office is promising to fill the vacant positions as soon as possible.
Governor Deal has a hand-picked a five person panel that will sort through the applications. His spokesman says they will get started Friday.
“We’re gratified that so many people want to chip in to help the children,” said Deal spokesman Brian Robinson.
Among the applicants is Jacques W. Hall Jr., a DeKalb County real estate agent and unsuccessful former school board candidate in south DeKalb. Hall told the AJC he would serve with integrity and purpose” and focus on children.
R. Alexander Fitzhugh, a father of two and book publisher from Ellenwood, said he applied because he wants to make school more compelling by tailoring classes for disinterested students. “I feel like they have I.D.D., interest deficit disorder,” he said.
A 2011 law allows the governor to replace board members in districts that are put on probation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
In December the DeKalb board was put on probation by SACS and the accrediting agency is threatening to strip accreditation altogether over allegations of school board mismanagement.
That triggered a hearing by the Georgia Board of Education and a recommendation that Deal suspend the six members who were in office last year, two-thirds of the board.
The suspended school board members appealed are taking their case to the Georgia Supreme Court, claiming the law is unconstitutional.