School Board names interim superintendent

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 29, 2006

WINTON – Personnel issues, past, present, and future were the highlights of the Hertford County Board of Education meeting Monday night.

The Dennis Deloatch chapter came to a close when the board approved by a 3-2 vote to hire Dr. Mary Joe Allen as the county’s interim School Superintendent.

Allen who has worked as a consultant for Partners For Excellence as well as serving as Director for the North Carolina Center for the Advancement of Teaching (NCCAT) for eight years, was formerly the Superintendent of Alamance County Schools from 1990 through 1994, and served in the same capacity in Perquimans County from 1988-1990.

Allen, who received her doctorate from Duke University, is the wife of Jim Allen, an employee of Catherine’s Restaurant in Ahoskie, which is owned by School Board Chairman David Shields.

Shields was joined by fellow board members Wendell Hall and Rev. Patrick Young in favor of Allen’s hiring while John Horton and Ronald Baker voted in opposition.

Former Hertford County School Superintendent Dr. George Norris was nominated as a candidate for the position, but was defeated 3-2 as the board members voted in reverse to the Allen nomination.

Several citizens again requested to speak to the board directly to express their displeasure over the non-renewal of Deloatch as superintendent.

Deloatch, who was in attendance as a member of the audience, did not speak at the meeting nor was his presence acknowledged.

It was obvious from the expediency with which a conclusion was reached about the hiring of Allen, that the board was ready put the issue of the former superintendent behind them.

In a telephone interview on Wednesday, Allen spoke about her task for the upcoming months.

&uot;I am here first and foremost to offer as much support as I can to the board, teachers and principals of Hertford County,&uot; Allen said. &uot;I believe my success will be contingent on my ability to build good relationships within the system.&uot;

Allen will begin work on Monday.

In other Board of Education news:

Baker announced in the open session that he planned to run for re-election to the school board later this year. Baker acknowledged there had been speculation that he would not seek re-election, a fact that he confirmed in his announcement, but said that he has rethought his position on that matter and expressed his desire to remain a member of the board.

Charles Simmons was approved to remain Athletic Director at Hertford County High School and Gregory Watford was retained as head coach of varsity football. In total, 38 coaching positions and extra curricular director assignments were approved for the high school. Simmons will also remain the head coach of varsity basketball.

The board approved a field trip for the Hertford County High School’s men’s basketball team to travel to Greensboro July 21 and 22 for the Ben Smith 2006 Jamboree.

The team, which advanced to the state’s regional playoff round last season, will be competing against teams from Chapel Hill, Greensboro, Burlington, Charlotte and several other locales at Smith High School in Greensboro.