Board will vote on keeping Thurmond
10/4/2013, 6:35 a.m.
DeKalb School Board members are set to vote Monday on a contract extension for interim Superintendent Michael Thurmond.
Dr. Melvin Johnson, School Board chairman, said Oct. 3 that he believes the board will vote to keep Thurmond, whose contract expires on Feb. 8, 2014.
“I think he has done an excellent job for the school district,” Johnson said. “He’s focused on improving classroom instruction and student performance as we all are.”
Johnson said Thurmond and the board have been talking for about a month about an extension that would amend his current title to just “superintendent.”
Thurmond’s current contract pays him $275,000 a year and $2,600 in “routine” expenses.
Johnson said Thurmond is not seeking a salary increase.
“He just wants to serve,” Johnson said. “We need stability and he’s offered invaluable insights that helped us resolve the district’s legal fees left over from past lawsuits.”
With Thurmond’s help, the School Board amended its agreement with Atlanta law firm King and Spalding on June 3. The law firm represented the district in its lawsuit against Heery International, its former construction firm. The deal removed taxpayers funds from all future legal fees and expenses associated with the case at savings of $30 million.
When he took the job in February, Thurmond said that he intended to stay only one year.
In a statement Thursday, Thurmond, who was a lawyer with Butler Wooten & Fryhofer before taking the job with DeKalb Schools, said they have made substantial and sustainable progress in a relatively short period of time.
“My ultimate goal is to stabilize the district and return to my law practice,” he said.
Parents and other stakeholders will have a chance to voice their opinions Monday during public comment starting at 5:45 p.m.
The board meeting, which starts at 7 p.m., will be in the J. David Williamson Boardroom at 1701 Mountain Industrial Blvd. in Stone Mountain.