School board meeting at bigger venue
by Michelle Babcock
July 21, 2013 12:35 AM | 4016 views | 3 3 comments | 24 24 recommendations | email to a friend | print
With the school board set to hear a request to censure member Kelly Marlow on Wednesday, the meeting was moved Friday to the Cherokee High School auditorium amid concerns about there being enough space to accommodate what is expected to be a huge turnout.

Barbara Jacoby, Cherokee County School District director of Public Information, Communications and Partnerships, said Friday the decision to change locations was based on many indications that the turnout may be high.

“The decision was made based on numerous indications that attendance levels likely will exceed the School Board auditorium capacity,” Jacoby said. “Including inquiries from citizens, correspondence to school board members, media coverage and social media activity.”

The Cherokee High School auditorium is at 930 Marietta Highway in Canton. The doors open at 6 p.m. and the meeting will start at 7 p.m.

The meeting agenda, which was published online July 17, includes a vote on be whether the board will conduct a School Board Code of Ethics Violation Hearing regarding recent action by Marlow, as well as the second opportunity for public comments on the 2013-14 budget and a vote to approve the budget.

The agenda item to consider a code of ethics hearing was requested by Board Chair Janet Read two weeks in advance of the meeting, as shown through an open records request.

Read said Tuesday her request for the code of ethics hearing was regarding a complaint letter that Marlow sent to AdvancED SACS in June. AdvancED SACS is the agency in charge of school accreditation in the South. In her letter to SACS, Marlow claimed that the board was “no longer able to effectively govern.”

The SCRAM! group, or Smart Citizens Rally Against Marlow, was created in mid-June in response to Marlow’s actions. On Friday, the group had more than 100 people who indicated plans to attend the meeting.

If the board votes to conduct an ethics violation hearing regarding Marlow’s letter to SACS, which would have to be approved by a two-thirds vote, Marlow would have 30 days of notice prior to the hearing being held.

“If at this hearing it is found by a vote of two-thirds of all the members of the board that Ms. Marlow has violated the code of ethics, the board will determine an appropriate sanction,” the agenda item summary states.

Also on the agenda for Wednesday’s meeting is the second opportunity for public comments on the 2013-14 school year budget.

The executive summary of the budget was presented at the last meeting, and the full budget was posted online on June 20, which allowed for more than the lawfully required 30 days for public review before the budget is adopted, according to Jacoby.

Jacoby said the June 13 meeting was the first chance for public input on the budget and Wednesday will be the last chance for people to speak about the budget during the agenda item. Jacoby said that when the budget agenda item is considered, the chair will allow speakers for a total of 30 minutes, and the board has the ability to vote to extend the time.

Though the school board is not legally required to have public hearings for the budget unless there is a tax increase, the board will have given two opportunities for public comments prior to voting to approve the 2013-14 budget, Jacoby said.

Comments-icon Post a Comment
bo duke
July 21, 2013
King P go home
the one
July 22, 2013
bo duke - same to ya!
luke duke
July 22, 2013
home: that's OK - you keep him.
*We welcome your comments on the stories and issues of the day and seek to provide a forum for the community to voice opinions. All comments are subject to moderator approval before being made visible on the website but are not edited. The use of profanity, obscene and vulgar language, hate speech, and racial slurs is strictly prohibited. Advertisements, promotions, spam, and links to outside websites will also be rejected. Please read our terms of service for full guides