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Judge Grants Restraining Order Against Suspension of DeKalb School Board

Gov. Deal had called a Monday press conference, announcing whether or not he would suspend six members of the DeKalb Board of Education.


A federal judge has issued a restraining order that prevents the suspension of six DeKalb school board officials by Gov. Nathan Deal.

Over the weekend, Judge Richard Story issued the order, according to Channel 2 Action News. The order does not prevent Deal from suspending the school board members, but does prohibit their actual suspension until a hearing is convened on Friday.

Deal had scheduled a Monday news conference to announce whether he was suspending six members of the DeKalb school board.

After a 14-plus-hour meeting on Thursday, the State Board of Education voted to recommend that Deal remove six members of the DeKalb school board.

The board voted unanimously to recommend that Sarah Copelin-Wood, Donna Edler, Eugene Walker, Jay Cunningham, Nancy Jester and Pamela Speaks be removed from the DeKalb school board.

If Gov. Deal follows the board's recommendation, Jim McMahan, Marshall Orson and Melvin Johnson would remain on the board as newly elected members.

However, in a legal move late Friday afternoon, the school board filed an emergency motion in federal court, hoping to stop the governor from taking any action. 

See Also:

School Board Files Emergency Motion Motion to Stop Possible Suspension

Replay Patch's Live Coverage of the State Board of Education Hearing With the DeKalb School Board

Piper February 24, 2013 at 08:25 PM
As elected officials, can't they be impeached since it appears a majority of the voters would prefer hey be ousted...
Guy Midvale February 24, 2013 at 08:58 PM
They should just step aside and not waste any more money. They may be correct, but that isn't the issue here. The issue is 10 years of failed leadership. It is time for a fresh start.
Steve Skinner February 24, 2013 at 09:15 PM
And Michael Thurmond drops another 50 points on the Truth-O-Meter. His only concern is for the children? No. His only concern is for keeping his new high paying job; hence, his devotion to keeping them in office. Help us, Governor Deal! You're our only hope.
Henry Batten February 24, 2013 at 10:05 PM
Guy, I would agree with you on your suggestion that those clowns named for suspension resign. I would rather see that happen than to have the governor bypass the electoral process.
Sharon Daugherty February 24, 2013 at 10:42 PM
I am all for them being removed, as they have never been able to answer a single question about the mismanagement of millions of dollars, instead opting to close schools, increase class size, fire key personnel, and take away our children's resources. However, that does not mean we, the voters and taxpayers, should be stripped of our right to elect a new board. All of this is moving in the direction of one man having too much power and corporate America having its hands in education. Once again, the kids will suffer for all the political mess that they had nothing to do with creating.
Crash February 24, 2013 at 11:26 PM
Why Nancy Jester????
bulldogger February 24, 2013 at 11:39 PM
Folks, ima telling you, this corrupt BOE will be there until the voters decide to reject them. I can already see $$$$$$$$ signs in realtors eyes.
HamBurger February 25, 2013 at 01:16 AM
Mr. Steve, I do not disagree. They should all go. However, one thought is that the existing board, under pressure, and with Michael Thurmond in control, may have less issues with a BOE faced with a possible learning curve. Indoctrinated idiots that “see the light” could potentially be better than new replacements facing a learning curve. Something to think about? Please . . . The Truth-O-Meter is just a bunch of BS! Please pass the yellow mustard!
Jarod Apperson February 25, 2013 at 01:59 AM
From Maureen's article on the court order: Walker said Sunday, “I was elected by the people, but I work for God." Are you serious? Is he implying some divine right to be on the school board? I thought that kind of died with Louis XIV. This is a power-hungry mess. I don't know what the solution is but it is a mess.
Sharon Daugherty February 25, 2013 at 02:02 AM
Jarod, I think that "power hungry mess" is the perfect description of everything that is going on, not just in the BOE, but across DeKalb County in general. I am so sick of all of us suffering because of the mess going on among these commissioners, board members, and anyone else granted a little authority. They have abused their power and all of us.
Cheryl Miller February 25, 2013 at 02:15 AM
We need to start a countywide effort to recall all of them, regardless of whether you like your own or not. It's the only way to save our money, our accreditation and our children without igniting a huge turf war. This county needs to put the children first. We are hoping "Restore DeKalb" will announce its next meeting soon and people will stop worrying about their cityhood movements until we can solve this problem together. OR, as the song goes.... we will alllllll go down together!!! Yes, we will alllll go down together. (Billy Joel, I believe)
Sharon Daugherty February 25, 2013 at 02:19 AM
My husband and I would love to work with Restore Dekalb. We were reading the article on Lakeside going for possible city status and thinking, what will become of DeKalb if every section turns into its own city? I understand communities wanting to protect themselves and preserve life, but we all still have to deal with certain issues that we share.
Fred February 25, 2013 at 09:08 AM
Guy, I fully agree. In the best interest of the children and the failed system, they should step down.
Sally February 25, 2013 at 12:23 PM
Learning curve??? That's funny. A new board would face a learning curve.... as opposed to the one that just spent thousands of our tax dollars for a consultant to teach them to do their job?
Sally February 25, 2013 at 12:25 PM
OK, they've made their point. Now, if they are truly concerned with the education system in Dekalb County they will step down and let the BOE get about the business it's supposed to be about. Educating children. Not supporting the lifestyles of high priced attorneys.
Jo February 25, 2013 at 01:04 PM
Enough already--how can we, the voting public, either impeach or remove them? No votes, no positions, no pay--and please, no more political maneuvering. What was this judge thinking?!! (Can we remove him from office while we're at it? Seriously.)
Tom Doolittle February 25, 2013 at 02:41 PM
DeKalb BOE does not have the credibility to sue--and motives are questionable, but the law needs to be challenged at Supreme Court. That would set a precedent for how to handle home rule and local control attacks by the state. Secondly--people really should consider the pattern being established by the Governor's office and precedent that he is setting. The problem is the reliance on third party and "extrajudicial" (unaccountable review and investigations) to support his actions--SACS on one hand and former prosecutors (Atlanta testing). The implications for growth in executive power to essentially overthrow standing govts is scary. Complicity by the media for public "trial" is also damning. Also--the pattern is undeniable--it is only with black govts. They have proven ineffective (mostly incompetent)--however there is a pattern.
Gene Cofer February 25, 2013 at 03:53 PM
Funny I don't recall this being an issue when the county gubment was run by honkies.
Jerome Masters February 25, 2013 at 04:46 PM
Most white people want a crook or inept person out of office. Pres Nixon comes to mind.Now having said that we are still being punished for the sins of our prior generations.It will NEVER end.Payback really is a b***h.If they were on a sinking ship most would not care if whitey was on board too.Flame suit on
"E Pluribus Unum" February 25, 2013 at 05:33 PM
Tom Doolittle, yes, the whole "extrajudicial" and growth of executive power to trump standing governments is very, very disturbing. Also media? What media? The lack of true investigative, fact driven, substantiated by three sources, journalism and news reporting is creating high risk and dysfunction for the entire community. How in hell did we end up like this?
Patch Reader February 25, 2013 at 06:49 PM
This all makes me very sad. We moved here because we thought Livsey Elementary was a good school. I tell you, the outer suburbs are starting to look better and better all the time.
Tom Doolittle February 25, 2013 at 08:37 PM
Don't sweat it Patch Reader (et al)--the Charters are on the way--en masse. Question is, how many will be privately run or will truly be representative of public schools? The other question is whether the economic development community and hoem buyers will give the "area" credit for all of its coming choices (private, charter, special neighborhood programs, magnets, still solid neighborhood schools). Will the real estate community be able to tell future buyers that the schools will be as good as you--the parent buyer--MAKE THEM. They always have. The real estate scare is IRRELEVENT to this area people. Its a ruse and hysteria.
john penn February 27, 2013 at 01:43 AM
Tom....Quote "Also--the pattern is undeniable--it is only with black govts. They have proven ineffective (mostly incompetent)--however there is a pattern". What started out to be an excellent post digressed into "race". The race and class warfare cards are major stumbling blocks in the resolution of problems in this country. Be a part of the solution and not part of the problem. "Pride cometh before a fall".
Tom Doolittle February 27, 2013 at 03:21 AM
John Penn--woops--I was not clear with my comment about black-led govts. I wasn't referring back to my comment about OUR govet being incompetent. It is--and just happens to be black led (not necessarily cause and effect). No--the trend that I was referring to as undeniable is that the only govts being attacked by establishment power (aided and abetted by media) just happen to be black-led. Yes--I suppose that is still a bigoted comment, because it distinguishes different ethnicities but I would make the same comment about legislative attack on black-led local govts regardless of who was running the attack--white/blck/Rep/Dem. Doesn't matter--the attack pattern is consistent.... ...and indeed aided and abetted by media. When the AJC went on its self-appointed rounds to expose a 100 other school systems for test cheating (to save Atlanta's interests)--they disn't study a single county school system--all cities--all black-led. To quote Creative Loafing, they are indeed Cox--and we are suckers.

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