DeKalb Co. school board must explain itself at state hearing - CBS46 News

DeKalb Co. school board must explain itself at state hearing

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Georgia's Department of Education has summoned members of the DeKalb County School Board to present evidence as to why they should not be suspended.

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), the district's accrediting agency, has put the school system on probation. SACS officials said an investigation found mismanagement of money, abuse of power and unethical hiring practices.

Many parents said they want the state board to recommend that the governor fire DeKalb County's entire school board, as he is allowed by law to do.

"This is a critical juncture and a game changer for the DeKalb County School District," said Gil Hearn of Parents for DeKalb Schools. "I hope this can bring about a new day for all of the students of DeKalb." 

Caroline Lord of Tucker has followed the drama in the district for months.

"Now we have millions of dollars that are missing and textbooks that didn't get to students," said Lord. "When our children don't have textbooks, if that's not the straw that broke the camel's back, I don't know what is." 

School Board Chairman Eugene Walker said he could not comment on the upcoming hearing before the state board. 

"We are trying to correct our faults," Walker told CBS Atlanta News.

"Our taxes have gone up," said Lord. "We're seeing a decrease in the funds going to the school system, to the actual schools, to the teachers. We're seeing the layoffs. Enough is enough."

Board members must appear before the state board at 1 p.m. on January 17.

The state board will then make a recommendation to the governor who has the final say on whether DeKalb board members will be replaced.

The Department of Education said it is unclear whether the board will vote at the upcoming hearing or hold a second one. 

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