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Bibb school board votes against some Macon promise costs | News

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Bibb school board votes against some Macon promise costs
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The Bibb County School Board voted to discontinue its memorandum of understanding with the Central Georgia Partnership for Individual and Community Development, or P.I.C.D, the group that oversees the Macon Promise Neighborhood initiative.

The system had an agreement that it would pay up to $325,000 annually for the promise center operational services at the Historic Ballard-Hudson school, which includes janitorial and maintenance work.

The memorandum, which had a clause that gave the board the option to cancel, was signed October 2012 during former superintendent Romain Dallemand's tenure.

Board member Lynn Farmer said the system can provide the operational services itself.

"We agreed to pay that money upon receipt of their documentation that they have spent it. And so each year they're suppose to give us receipts, so that we can reimburse them for what is spent," said Farmer. "And we've been asking for those receipts for 2013 and we've not received those. So we can't pay that amount until we get those receipts in hand. Again, it's not a good relationship to be in when we can provide those services ourselves and we don't have to worry about documentation and paying someone to do something that we can do ourselves," said Farmer.

Also at the called board meeting, members discussed changes to the superintendent job advertisement. They voted to make it preferable that candidates have superintendent experience and that he or she has a doctorate and/or training through a state approved superintendent development program.

In the search that ended last month, the board posted that candidates must have superintendent experience and must have a doctorate. Board member Lester Miller is glad that those qualifications are no longer mandatory.

"Well I think we learned a lesson because we set the standards before mandatory requirements for superintendent and we didn't get as many candidates that was actually previous superintendents before," said Miller. "And I think we learned a lesson from that. If we want to cast a wider net to have a better choice to choose from we actually would go to a preference. We can still make our individual decisions when we get back into the room we take a vote. But I think it's important that we interview as many people as possible or look at as many people as possible."

Board member Tom Hudson believes it should be mandatory for the next superintendent to hold a doctorate and have been a superintendent. "We need someone who has the experience, and we're paying a considerable amount of money for a superintendent. And we need to be good stewards of the public's money and we need the very best that we can find," said Hudson.

The Georgia School Boards Association is helping with the search. Farmer said the application should be posted early next week and the deadline for the superintendent search will be July 31st.

The board also approved a tentative fiscal 2015 budget. The next steps include advertising the budget in the Macon Telegraph for two weeks. The board will then hold a public hearing over the budget and vote on it.


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