School board chairman resigns

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He disagrees with Superintendent’s recent termination of employee

By Stevie Lowery

Michael Mullins resigned Wednesday, May 21, as the chairman of the Marion County Board of Education.
He sent the following email to his fellow board members:


Fellow Board Members,
We all know that it takes a unified board to achieve success in any school district and anything short of unification creates chaos. With that said, I want to inform you that I have decided to resign as Chairman and as a member of the Marion County School Board. As you all know there have been many changes made concerning personnel in the last ten months and I believe they have been for the good of the district regardless of what public opinion has been. However, I can not support our Superintendent in her decision to terminate an employee of the Central Office and it is not this decision alone that has brought me to this point. There are other circumstances that play a very important part in my decision. I wish you all well in your effort to make the Marion County School System a successful school district.

Mullins also sent the letter to The Lebanon Enterprise, and we asked him what employee at central office he was referring to in his letter. He said he was referring to Pam Spalding, administrative assistant to the superintendent, who was fired on May 16.
“In this instance here, I just do not agree with the superintendent,” Mullins said. “I think she made a bad decision. After this decision, I don’t feel like I can be an effective board member anymore.”
Mullins also said a lack of respect from the superintendent contributed to his decision to resign.
“It takes respect by both parties for each other, and I feel like I’ve lost that respect,” Mullins said.
Mullins said since he was elected four years ago he has tried to be an effective board member, and has always had the best interests of the district and the students in mind when making decisions.
“I have never tried to micromanage any superintendent,” Mullins said. “I’ve always tried to work with the superintendent to do what was best for the school district. Those were always my intentions and I always tried to do that.”
He said he believes Superintendent Schlosser has some good ideas for the district, but he doesn’t agree with how she’s trying to accomplish those ideas.
“I believe that her vision for the Marion County school system is genuine. I think she has great ideas,” Mullins said. “But, I disagree with her methods on trying to achieve that.”
The Lebanon Enterprise asked Superintendent Schlosser if she would like to make a comment regarding Mullins' resignation and his comments about her. She sent the following response (via email):
"Thank you for the opportunity to respond, but I have no comment on his statement. However, my comment is that I am completely focused on supporting our staff and students as they started testing today at our elementary and middle schools with the high school continuing end-of-course testing and AP testing. Testing has gone smoothly. Everyone has been so excited and positive about finishing our school year STRONG! I appreciate all the support that our parents have given to our students and the hard work that staff did to ensure that every student has the opportunity to make DREAMS come true. This will continue to be my focus for the last days of school."
Michael Mullins’ vacant school board seat will be advertised in The Lebanon Enterprise for two weeks. (As of press time the advertisement hadn’t been placed). People in District 2 will have the opportunity to apply. District 2 includes the following voting precincts: Courthouse, Hamilton Heights and Calvary. If two or more people apply for the seat, the next step will be to schedule interviews with all qualified applicants. A committee, made up of current and former school board members and educational administrators from other counties, will interview all applicants. Once interviews are complete, the committee will make a recommendation to the Kentucky Commissioner of Education Terry Holliday, Ph.D. If two or more people don’t apply, the position will have to be advertised again for two weeks, which will start the entire process all over again. The person who is selected will finish the remainder of Mullins’ four-year term, which will end in November of 2014.

Candidate files for District Two
Angela Carter of Lebanon filed Thursday to run for the District 2 school board seat in November. She’s also going to apply to fill the current vacancy until the election.
Carter is a fifth grade math teacher at Washington County Elementary School.
After filing her candidacy papers last week, she wrote the following post on Facebook:
“I, Angela Carter, teacher at Washington County Elementary School, am so very proud to stand up and declare my candidacy for the school board vacancy in district two! I can’t say this loud enough, MY PASSION IS EDUCATION! I have been in education for 25 years and I have learned a “thing or two,” but I am so excited for the lessons yet to come! I am a life-long learner as I encourage my students to be everyday! I welcome the opportunity to dream, believe, and achieve along with the Marion County Public School System.”

Eligibility to serve on school board:
• You must be at least 24 years old.
• You must have been a citizen of Kentucky for at least three years preceding his/her election and be a voter of the district to which he/she is elected.
• Have completed at least the 12th grade or been issued a GED certificate.
• Does not hold a state office requiring the constitutional oath and is not a member of the General Assembly.
• Does not hold or discharge the duties of any civil or political office, deputyship, or agency under city or county government; is not an officer or employee of a city or county.
• Is not, at the time of his/her election, directly or indirectly involved in the sale to the board of books, stationery, or any other property, material, supplies, equipment, or services for which school funds are expended.
• Has not been removed from membership on a board of education for cause.
• Does not have a father, mother, brother, sister, husband, wife, son, daughter, aunt, uncle, son in law, or daughter in law employed by the school district.
• Meets in-service requirements as specified in KRS 160.180.

School board members’ terms
• DeLane Pinkston - District 1
Pinkston's seat will be up for election in November of 2015. District one includes the following voting precincts: Gravel Switch, Bradfordsville, Glasscock School and fire department.
• Vacant - District 2
Mullins' seat will be up for election in November of 2014. District two includes the following voting precincts: Courthouse, Hamilton Heights and Calvary voting precincts.
• Butch Cecil - District 3
The district three seat will be up for election in November of 2014. District three includes the following voting precincts: Depot, Jessietown and Raywick.
• Mike Cecil - District 4
Cecil's seat will be up for election in November of 2015. District four includes the following voting precincts: St. Charles, Loretto, St. Francis and Holy Cross.
• Bernard Miles - District 5
Miles' seat will be up for election in November of 2015. District five includes the following voting precincts: Library, Rolling Hills and Centre Square.