A tense end of Thursday’s school board meeting left high school principal Chris Williams without a contract for next year and Board member John Trammell warning the board may be going “down a slippery slope.”
Among the final items in a lengthy meeting was the board approving personnel recommendations. Unlike most board meetings, there was no executive session on the agenda for closed discussion. Thursday, Interim Superintendent Ben Arp presented a list of personnel recommendations which included all principals without reading any names or mentioning any position specifically.
When personnel came up on the agenda, Board member John Trammell first motioned that all the superintendent’s recommendations, including all principals, be approved.
Board member Dan Fincher asked for the motion to be amended to where high school Principal Chris Williams’ position be considered separately. After some discussion of procedure with the board and attorney Phil Landrum as to how amendments to motions are handled, the board voted three to two that Williams’ contract would be handled apart from all the other personnel recommendations.
The split on the board saw longer-serving Board Members John Trammell and Ervin Easterwood voting no to the separate action on Williams and the three board members elected in the most recent election, Wendy Lowe, Byron Long and Fincher, voting to move Williams’ contract to a separate item.
The board then voted to approve all other personnel recommendations with the same three-to-two bloc and then voted to not approve Williams’ contract with the same voting lines.
The only comment or discussion following this was Board member Trammell saying he had already discussed all he had to say and warning the board is “going down a slippery slope.”