Board votes to put 8 educators in new spots

News 12 at 11 / Thursday, April 3, 2014

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW) -- It took the board less than an hour to put eight educators in new spots. All of these recommendations stemmed right from the superintendent himself.

Board members were only in their seats a moment for Thursday night's special called meeting before they got right back up to head into executive session, the meeting behind closed doors, to talk about one thing, personnel matters.

"The reason for the urgent meeting tonight is this has to be done by April the 15th when their contracts will have to be renewed," board member Jack Padgett, Jr. explained.

When they returned, eight votes shuffled the leaders of several Richmond County Schools. Here's the breakdown.

Garrett Elementary Principal Doug Frierson will be moved to Hephzibah Middle, sending Hephzibah Middle's Larina Thomas to Hephzibah High School. That puts Hephzibah High's principal Walter Reeves as a Title I Instructional Provider for the school system.

The board also decided to move Tobacco Road Elementary's principal Geoclyn Williams to Freedom Park K-8. Freedom Park's Pauline Andrews will jump to Sego Middle School.

A sixth vote put Math Coordinator Shelly Allen in Stacey Mabray's current seat as Curriculum and Instructional Director, pushing Mabray in the doors of Butler High as principal. Butler High's Greg Thompson will now head to Tubman Education Center.

"[Dr. Roberson] wanted to move people into schools that would make the schools have progress," Padgett said.

Padgett says most of these are lateral moves with no change in pay. But, there will be at least one pay cut taking effect in 2015.

"I wouldn't consider any of it demotions. Some of it's to put people in a better fit," he said.

It was a lot of changes in a short amount of time but not the two we were expecting.

When News 12 asked why nothing was said about Laney principal Tonia Mason or Tubman principal Dr. Wayne Frazier, Padgett responded, "I think because the issues that are going around that, we didn't discuss those. They will be discussed later."

News 12 spoke with Dr. Roberson after the meeting. He says Dr. Frazier's position is still being determined. He also confirms Mason is being investigated by the Georgia Association of Educators. He says they didn't take any action tonight, because they're still waiting on information. He says they should get something soon. But, as rumors fly, he confirmed he has not received any official notice of anyone's resignation.

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