King ousted as school board chair

Published 12:56 pm Saturday, July 23, 2016

At the board meeting on Thursday night, the Franklin City School Board took a vote to decide who would be the school board chair for the year. After being nominated and receiving the majority of the votes, Andrea Hall-Leonard, ward 3 member, accepted the position.

City attorney Taylor Williams opened the floor for nominations. Immediately, ward 5 member Jeanette Austin nominated incumbent Edna King. Then, ward 1 member Will Council nominated Dr. Hall-Leonard.



Austin, King and Verta Jackson all voted for King, while Councill, Hall-Leonard, Nancy Godwin and Bob Holt voted for the latter, giving her the necessary votes to win the position of chair.

“As a product of Franklin City Schools, I am honored to have the opportunity to serve families in the capacity of school board chairman,” Hall-Leonard said. “As our mission states, we ‘partner with families and the community to provide enriching opportunities to empower individual learners to maximize their potential in becoming critical thinkers, productive citizens, and life-long learners.’ Serving on the school board is and has been a rewarding learning experience. It takes courage to advocate for children while simultaneously representing views of families and community stakeholders.”



Holt added, “Dr. Hall-Leonard is an excellent choice. She filled in for Mrs. King several times and did a really good job. I am very pleased with that appointment.”

Williams then looked at Hall-Leonard and said that the board needed to also pick a vice chair for the year. Holt nominated Councill, and Hall-Leonard nominated Jackson. Councill received three votes — Holt, Godwin and himself — and Jackson received four — Hall-Leonard, King, Austin and herself. After winning the vote, Jackson accepted her new role as vice chair.

Both Dr. Hall-Leonard and Jackson said they are very excited about their new positions.

“When I began working with children through early intervention in the ‘90s, I had no idea that one day I would advocate for children and families to shape life long learners as a member of the school board,” Hall-Leonard said. “As parents of six children, my husband Richard and I have experienced first hand challenges families face to educate, establish and instill character while providing for everyday needs. I’m appreciative of school board colleagues for the nomination and for entrusting me with the leadership position as chairman. Franklin City Public Schools will continue to grow as a school division as we intentionally see value in FCPS and add value to the children, families and community we serve.”

She began her new role on the board as soon as the votes were over, leading the rest of the meeting. If she should ever be absent from a meeting, Jackson will act as the chairman.