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February 2021
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Swapping superintendents enrages parents, public

   school board supt meeting

     The school voted (3-2) to make Tony Young, in vest at right, the interim superintendent, at a meeting Monday. They voted to negotiate to “modify” the contract of Dr. Rick Townsend, who had been serving as superintendent by the same margin. Townsend’s empty chair is at far left.

     While not explicitly terminating Pickens Superintendent Dr. Rick Townsend, the school board has voted three to two to authorize their attorney to “negotiate to modify” his contract. They then voted to name Tony Young interim superintendent.

Board Chair Sue Finley, along with Steve Smith and Aaron Holland, were in favor of making the change at the top; Tucker Green and Tommy Gartrell opposed the change.

The changing of superintendents, yet again, did not sit well with the public and 50-60 people turned out to oppose the decision at the Monday, January 18th meeting. The vocal group created enough concern that a contingent of backup deputies from the sheriff’s office arrived and were stationed around the room with deputies eventually closing the doors to push out members of the public who did not get seats in the socially-distanced board meeting room.

    See full story in this week's print or online editions.