Parents want answers from school board after 2 meetings in 1 wee - - Columbia, South Carolina

Parents want answers from school board after 2 meetings in 1 week

School board members adjourn their meeting Thursday evening School board members adjourn their meeting Thursday evening
Sumter School Superintendent Randolph Bynum Sumter School Superintendent Randolph Bynum

More closed door talks with no answers Thursday in Sumter County. Just like Tuesday, the Sumter County School board called the meeting to order, went into executive session, came out, and told the crowd of waiting parents and teachers, "Good night."

A 90-minute executive session left parents here feeling ignored.  Some said a brief update from the board after the closed-door meeting didn't help matters.

"I thought it was a waste of my time that the board wouldn't conduct business," said Jim Reading.

"To adjourn another meeting until July 29," asked Gloria Felder. "This is getting ridiculous."
The meeting came two days after Superintendent Randolph Bynum resigned. His upcoming departure is what many parents and teachers pushed for.

Now they want to know the plan to find Bynum's replacement and address other problems.  

"I've got one question for the school board," said Don Demart. "We have on principle at Sumter High who is being accused of criminal acts?"

In April, the State Board of Education said it found problems surrounding exams students must pass to get a diploma. Sumter High Principal Sterling Harris denied any wrongdoing.

It's just one example of issues Sumter school leaders are dealing with.

One father said he's ready put this behind him.

"People have come together and voiced their opinion and their concerns and at this point a resignation has been put in place," said Chris Fland. "So I think what we need to do at this particular place and time is move forward."

WIS received this statement from board member Keith Shultz:

"The important task is to identify proper district leadership between Mr. Bynum's departure and the proper selection of a superintendent. This is the focus of the board's discussion tonight. We must assure everyone we recognize the urgency to put into place a leader who will ensure a smooth transition coming into the upcoming school year."

Superintendent Bynum's resignation will be final at the end of August. The next meeting will be Monday at Alice Drive Middle School.

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