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Five step forward to serve on School Board in ED-7 / March 13, 2017

Five citizens have indicated an interest in filling the Halifax County School Board seat in Election District 7 that has come open with the resignation of trustee Dick Stoneman.

Volunteering to serve on the board are Hugh Gravitt II, Shaye Bailey Hatchett, Roy L. “Nick” Long Jr., Monty Gerald Lowery and Beverly Murray.

Each of the candidates responded to a School Board appeal for citizens willing to serve in the ED-7 seat. The deadline for expressing an interest was Friday.

The School Board has until the end of March to select a successor to Stoneman, who stepped down in mid-January for health reasons.

Trustees will open their regular monthly session tonight at 7:30 p.m. with a public hearing to consider the five candidates’ qualifications. The meeting will be held in the second floor meeting room of the Mary Bethune Office Complex.

The School Board has until the end of March to choose a candidate to fill the position. The interim trustee will serve through the November election, which will include balloting to name a trustee to serve the remainder of Stoneman’s unfilled term, through 2019.

Also at tonight’s School Board meeting, Superintendent of Schools Merle Herndon will report on Halifax’s accreditation rankings and how they compare with peer school divisions in Southside Virginia.

Several items of unfinished business also are part of tonight’s agenda, including ongoing discussions on the New Beginnings alternative education program. Frosty Owens will make a presentation on the topic.

Also Jeff Davis, head of special education services, will discuss Medicaid reimbursements and Finance Director Jay Camp will share information on employee renewal rates for health, dental and vision insurance.

Another item under consideration tonight is whether to purchase a car for use by the new school superintendent, or to continue to offer a mileage allowance as part of his or her contract.

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Nick Long's wife is the Principal of a school in this county. Nick knows this would be a conflict of interest at the least. Come on Nick, you've always said you tried to stay above the fray. Having the press on the school board is unacceptable!!!! Step aside Nick.

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