Archived Story

Saunders out at GCHS

Published 10:50am Wednesday, February 23, 2011

GATESVILLE – Geneva Saunders first year as principal at Gates County High School ended abruptly here last week.

Saunders was removed as the administrative leader at the county’s largest school. She was reassigned as a Social Worker, responsible for the county’s three elementary schools (Buckland, Gatesville and T.S. Cooper).

Gates County Schools Superintendent Dr. Zenobia Smallwood made no comment when asked by the Gates County Index of why the change was made regarding the leadership at the high school.

The superintendent was also asked if the removal of Saunders as GCHS principal was approved by the Gates County Board of Education.

“I did not need their approval,” Dr. Smallwood replied. “It comes under my contract as superintendent to make changes such as these.”

Dr. Smallwood said she promoted former GCHS Assistant Principal Tammi Ward to the role of Interim Principal at the high school. Ward’s former assistant duties will now be filled by Jennifer Hill, the high school’s Career Technical Education (CTE) coordinator. The superintendent said Hill will remain as the CTE coordinator as well as handling the assistant principal duties.

Prior to serving as GCHS principal, Saunders was an assistant principal at the school.

  • had-enough

    countyboy you are right about that one.they do what ever when ever they want-employing your wife when you sit on the schoolboard is not only a conflict of interest but it is un-ethical. No need to thank smallwood-i did at first too. but it came from higher up then her word on the street is. thats why the hushed mouth.smallwood hasn’t had a problem with it all these years..ha ha…why now? think the hammer was dropped.

    Suggest Removal

  • countyboy

    Wow, its about time. Man this family have tried to run Gates County for years. Great job Dr, Smallwood. We have to remember sending children home because of clothing will not help them land jobs nor do good in school and the community. We must work with our children and start looking pass the clothing. Education is the Key to Succes not clothing.

    Suggest Removal

  • had-enough

    I also heard she sent 152 students home from school the first week for wardrobe violations. LOL was there any students left in the school to teach? Come on GET REAL!

    Suggest Removal

  • had-enough

    Dr. Smallwood was told from higher ups we hear to do this. Smallwood was the one that gave her the position and your right her HUSBAND who sits on the school board. It is a HUGE conflict of interest and always has been.Parents have been complaining for YEARS.Looks like to me Mrs. Saunders messed with the wrong persons child this time. In this readers opinion Smallwood and Saunders both should be REMOVED from the school board as well. Haven’t you figured out why she is so closed mouth and wouldn’t give Cal Bryant a real statement.Read between the lines.Either way it was a good week in Gates County. One more down, plenty more to go!

    Suggest Removal

  • dejavoo25

    I am so glad!! My son is a sophomore at GCHS and he said that she walks around with a mean look on her face. I also beleive that was a conflict of interest anyway since her husband is Chairman of the Board….Good job Dr. Smallwood!!

    Suggest Removal

  • had-enough

    from what i heard it was over smallwoods head.someone went over all their heads and made some roll. its about time. she should never have been a principle in the first place. receptionist, social worker, vice principle, principle with no degree in teaching. wow sure is amazing huh, only in gates county.

    Suggest Removal

    • pnut

      “Only in Gates County”?, one of the best performing school systems in the area.
      Looks to me like the Board of Education does a pretty good job educating the children of Gates County with continued reductions in funding.

      Suggest Removal

  • headband

    I can only speculate on why geneva was removed as principal. But from what i hear, geneva has a very “u can’t tell me anything” type personality. My guess is that her and dr.smallwood bumped heads. This might explain why she removed geneva so hastily.

    Suggest Removal

  • had-enough

    well finally someone did their job.this has been a conflict of interest from the get go. husband is a sitting member of the gates county school board and she is put in as vice and then principle.just normal for gates county.would like to hear the real story behind this move. it will be out on the street before too long. the people have a right to know.after all it is our tax dollars.

    Suggest Removal

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