Brian Johnson recently submitted his resignation as superintendent but remained as a tenured employee of the Cherokee County School System. As their first order of business, the board, with Dr. Wood presiding, appointed Johnson as a physical education teacher at Centre Elementary School.
According to Don Stowe, chairperson, Cherokee County Board of Education, Dr. Wood will continue to serve in her present capacity as assistant superintendent, special education supervisors and attendance supervisor as well as superintendent.
Last week, Brett Keasler, a Democratic candidate for superintendent of Cherokee County Schools and Mitchell Guice, a Republican candidate for superintendent, proposed serving as co-superintendents. Linda Prater, a former employee of the school system, was the fourth applicant for the position, according to reports.
Board Member Lynn Rochester said she spent some time over the weekend looking over the AASB (Alabama Association of School Boards) Handbook on choosing superintendents.
“It said that if the board must appoint a superintendent, these are the qualifications they should look for: administrative experience, educational background, leadership style, their ability, their willingness to work with a diverse community, communication skills,” said Rochester. “I think that we have a nice group of applicants to select from.”
“I have thought about this all weekend,” said Rochester. “It also says in AASB handbook that when you are appointing a superintendent, that you should select someone who would not be a candidate for the position to avoid giving the interim an advantage over the other candidates.”
“I realize both candidates have asked for this position but I also contacted the school board association lawyer and she said this was an unprecedented thing, and that she had never heard of this before, but that being said, I weighed this, thought about it, prayed about it and I would like to nominate Dr. Trina Wood as the candidate for our superintendent because she has been instrumental in gaining us our advanced ed accreditation she had proven the fact that she has the administrative experience to do that she has a doctorate in education and has the highest degree,” said Rochester. “She has the ability, she has the willingness to work with a diverse community, she orchestrated people form every school in this county to work together and come up and I would like to pat her on the back and our people on the back.”
“Most systems who go through this accreditation do not even make accreditation the first time they try,” said Rochester. “There is always something they have to do to come up to standards. Our system met every accreditation standard.”
“I know all our administrators work together but due to the fact Dr. Wood was able to bring everybody together and come up with such great results that is my reason for nominating Dr. Trina Wood,” said Rochester.
“For consistency of our schools, I think whoever we appoint today should be our interim until the end of Mr. Johnson’s term (Jan. 1),” said Rochester. “That way whichever one of our candidates is lucky enough to be elected on the firs Tuesday in November, they will have that time to transition and that time to work with whoever our current administrator is to get everybody set up from the smoothest transition from one administration into another.”