PELL CITY – A new city school board member is expected to be sworn into office Tuesday night after seven candidates were interviewed Thursday night to fill the vacant District 5 seat.
A diverse group of candidates was interviewed for about 30 minutes apiece at the Central Office. Those interviewed included James “Eldon” Hall, Bart Perry, Brian Worley, Philip Roberson, Brandon Turner, Kenneth Miller Jr. and Sonia Dale.
The District 5 position became vacant in March after former board member Jeff Jones resigned.
The candidate selected to fill Jones’ position will serve the remainder of the former member’s unexpired term, which ends in November 2020.
Superintendent Dr. Michael Barber said each board member was provided a scoring sheet, so they could grade each answer by each candidate. From that, board members were expected to select the candidate who received their individual high score.
“I thought we had some wonderful candidates tonight,” Barber said.
Barber said he is playing no role in the decision-making process, and the selection of the new board member is completely in the hands of current board members, Cecil Fomby, Tammie Williams, Joe Sawyer and Laurie Henderson.
The board members were allowed to take their tally sheets home to go over before making their final decisions about their top candidates.
Barber said board members are not to talk with each other about their choices or to make any joint decision for a particular candidate outside the public’s view.
“I have talked to them about (not) discussing this among themselves,” he said. “But they do need a little time to process their notes.”
Board members have the weekend to make their final decisions for their top candidates.
“If you have any questions about the process, call me,” Barber told board members Thursday night.
Barber said, hopefully, a top candidate will emerge from the board.
Board members will provide their tally sheets with their top candidates to Barber by Monday.
Barber said all candidates will be notified whether they were selected to fill the District 5 seat Tuesday, before the scheduled board meeting that evening.
The candidate who is selected by the board is expected to be sworn into office at the regularly scheduled board meeting at 6 p.m.