Interim superintendent releases statement on board’s resignation

Published 4:25 pm Wednesday, November 9, 2016


By Monday evening, in compliance with a resolution Franklin’s city council passed unanimously Nov. 1, all members of Franklin’s school board tendered their resignations to City Attorney H. Taylor Williams IV.

Now, Franklin’s recently appointed interim superintendent, Kelvin Edwards Sr., is seeking to reassure the Franklin community about the future of Franklin City Public Schools, and released the following official statement Tuesday:

I understand and appreciate the concerns that have been widely shared in our community about the future of Franklin City Public Schools” Edwards wrote. “I want to take this opportunity to address these concerns.

First and foremost, I want to assure our community that quality instruction is ongoing in every school and the commitment of our teachers and administrators to our students remains steadfast. In addition, normal business operations, including employee payroll and administration of benefits, have not been disrupted nor will they be.

With the resignation of the entire School Board, we are facing a situation that is unprecedented in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The challenge now before city and school leadership is the need to provide clarity and certainty around the governance of the school division. Working in partnership with the City Council, Mayor and City Manager – and with guidance from State Superintendent Steve Staples – we will be charting a path forward for Franklin City Public Schools until a new School Board is in place. Dr. Staples has assured me that addressing this challenge is at the top of his agenda. The City Council is scheduled to meet this evening at 7 p.m. in closed session to begin discussions.

I am committed to keeping our community and our valued employees fully informed as we work together toward a resolution.

Finally, I want to ask our community and our employees for their support and patience as we work toward a solution that will benefit Franklin City Public Schools and the students we serve.”

The meeting will be held in the council chamber of City Hall and will also include an open session later in the evening.