State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman is “very concerned” after recent no-confidence votes were taken against the heads of the state’s two governor’s schools, according to a spokesman with the state Department of Education.
Faculty at the Governor’s School for Science & Mathematics in Hartsville voted “no confidence” in President Hector Flores on June 3, saying they had no confidence in Flores’ ability to lead the public boarding school for academically gifted juniors and seniors.
Faculty at the Governor’s School for the Arts & Humanities had taken a similar no-confidence vote against the Greenville school’s president, Cedric Adderley, just three months earlier.
The votes aren’t part of a formal process requiring action at the schools, and they are not directly related.
Each of the schools is governed by its own board of directors and receives more than $23 million in combined annual funding from the South Carolina Legislature.
Spearman’s chief spokesman, Ryan Brown, said the board of directors for the Governor’s School for Science & Mathematics is investigating the situation. The state superintendent won’t speak independently about the recent action taken, Brown said, but she “has been kept apprised” of the situation.
Spearman is a member of both schools’ board of directors.
“She is very concerned,” Brown said. “These institutions are two of South Carolina’s most preeminent schools and must act cohesively in order to continue their storied success.”
LIKE WHAT YOU’RE READING?
Support stories like this by supporting local journalism. Please consider becoming a subscriber. Here’s our special offer.
Flores emailed a statement when asked to comment.
“GSSM is undergoing transformational change which is both necessary and appropriate in order to serve the most talented students in the state,” Flores said in the statement. “Change for such schools is always difficult, so it comes as no surprise that there are those in our community who are opposed to these changes. While I respect their right to disagree, I, and the school’s leadership, remain committed to expanding GSSM’s reach into large and small communities around the state.”
In addition to the no-confidence vote, alumni at the Hartsville school have submitted their own petition of no confidence to the school’s board of directors. The petition has more than 400 signatures, or roughly 20% of all the school’s alumni, said Jason Hong, the petition’s organizer.
The petition asks that the board investigate concerns being raised by faculty, students and alumni through interviews to “understand why there are so many concerns being repeatedly raised about Dr. Flores by so many different constituencies.”
“The big worry is that there might not be a future for the Governor’s School under Dr. Flores’ leadership,” Hong said in a telephone interview last week.
The alumni petition also references a Greenville News story published on April 23 after faculty members were asked to destroy copies of the minutes of a special-called meeting in which Flores was criticized.
Among concerns documented in the Feb. 12 meeting minutes were a perceived lack of trust in and respect for faculty by Flores. A proposed solution was to hold a no-confidence vote, but no action took place because a quorum was no longer present, according to the minutes.
“A special meeting to discuss concerns about a single individual is highly unusual in any organization,” the petition states.
At the time, Flores said he was hired three years ago to introduce “bold changes” and that it was human nature to react with uneasiness during times of change.
“Since the faculty and staff of GSSM are deeply connected to our mission, it is natural that the process has involved challenging and passionate conversations from which we have not steered away,” Flores said.
Faculty at the Greenville Governor’s School approved their no-confidence vote on March 12 because of “grave concerns” the faculty had in Adderley’s failure to lead and engage with the school following the termination of longtime Vice President of Finance and Administration John Warner, according to a letter the Faculty Council sent to the school’s board.
Adderley, who disputed those concerns, was directed to meet regularly with the board and faculty as well as hire an executive coach in response to the vote.
“I’m very pleased with the progress that we’ve made as a campus community over the course of this year,” Adderley said in a statement last week.
Read or Share this story: https://www.greenvilleonline.com/story/news/education/2019/07/08/sc-governors-school-vote-no-confidence-department-of-education-superintendent-molly-spearman/1622768001/
- Picture this: ICERM program explores imagery of mathematics – Mirage News
- Guyanese students win top CAPE, CSEC awards – Stabroek News
- Science Hill student scores perfect 36 on ACT, looks to future in mathematics – Johnson City Press (subscription)
- Assistant Professor in Theoretical Particle Physics job with DURHAM UNIVERSITY | 183584 – Times Higher Education (THE)
- A math problem: How Delhi government is trying to get students to learn this subject better – The Indian Express
- CBSE Class 10 Mathematics-Basic Sample Question Paper 2020 with Solution – Jagran Josh
- Stock In The Spotlight :: PagSeguro Digital Ltd., (NYSE: PAGS) – Keep Reading
- Love Or Hate:: Clovis Oncology, Inc., (NASDAQ: CLVS) – Keep Reading
- Present Valuation:: New Residential Investment Corp., (NYSE: NRZ) – Keep Reading
- Shocking Alteration:: Workday, Inc., (NASDAQ: WDAY) – Keep Reading