In the Loop

  • Video: Downtown Historic District Delayed, Baby Bonds and a Botched Ambulance Response

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    This week, the Athens Politics Nerd looks into why the Athens-Clarke County Commission delayed a vote on a historic district for the west end of downtown; the "prosperity package" and Broderick Flanigan's idea to give savings bonds to African American babies that they could use to go to college, buy a house or start a business when they grow up; and National EMS' failure to respond to a 911 call from a local elementary school.


  • BOE Puts Superintendent Demond Means on Leave

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    Photo Credit: Austin Steele/file

    Superintendent Demond Means

    The Clarke County Board of Education voted 5-3 Monday to place Superintendent Demond Means on leave and name his chief of staff, Xernona Thomas, the chief executive until an interim superintendent is found.

    The vote ended Means' tumultuous two-and-a-half year tenure, although a number of details still remain to be worked out, including any severance package. Means' contract runs through the 2021-2022 school year, so he is owed more than $500,000 if he's fired without cause.

    Greg Davis, Kara Dyckman, Patricia Yager, Tawana Mattox and John Knox voted in favor of the motion, made by Yager, while Charles Worthy, Linda Davis and LaKeisha Gantt voted against it. District 2 representative Frances Berry resigned last month, leaving that seat vacant.


  • School Board May Appoint Interim Superintendent


    Demond Means

    The Clarke County Board of Education has scheduled another called meeting for Monday to discuss Superintendent Demond Means' departure.

    In addition to an executive session to discuss personnel matters, the agenda also includes an action item: "Potential Action to Appoint an Interim Superintendent." The 3:30 p.m. meeting will be held at the H.T. Edwards building.

    Whether or not an interim superintendent is appointed depends on how much progress the board makes during the closed session, President LaKeisha Gantt told Flagpole.


  • Demond Means Is Out as CCSD Superintendent

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    Photo Credit: Austin Steele/file

    Superintendent Demond Means and the Clarke County School District will be parting ways .

    "The board has entered into negotiations for his exit," President LaKeisha Gantt announced after the school board met for nearly four hours behind closed doors.

    The board took no vote on Means' departure. It's unclear if he is resigning, being fired or—most likely—negotiating a buyout. It's also unclear when his rocky tenure as superintendent will formally end. Gantt declined to answer any questions, saying that discussions in executive session are confidential.


  • Athens and Oconee County, Compared

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    Photo Credit: Chris Dowd

    Athens-Clarke and Oconee County are neighbors, but they've been growing along two different paths ever since the University of Georgia was founded in the late 18th century. We take a look at their history, land area, population, economic growth and school systems to get a better idea of how much they differ.


  • Superintendent Means Is Still in Office—for Now


    Photo Credit: Andrea Farnham

    A rally for Clarke County School Superintendent Demond Means drew about 50 people Friday.

    Demond Means came to work Friday and apparently will stay on as superintendent of the Clarke County School District at least through next week.

    Means said he would resign after a contentious discussion at Thursday's school board meetingregarding the board's response to an ethics complaint filed against Means with the Professional Standards Commission, which certifies educators. The board urged the PSC to dismiss the formal complaint, but a line added by board member Tawana Mattox saying that the board would hold Means accountable drew the superintendent's ire.

    "By virtue of that vote, you don't want me as superintendent, and we need to have a discussion about how I leave," he told the board Thursday.


  • School Superintendent Demond Means Says He's Quitting


    Photo Credit: Whitley Carpenter/file

    Clarke County School Superintendent Demond Means said he is resigning during a Board of Education meeting tonight that quickly devolved from sedate to a spectacle.

    Frustrations spilled over when the board discussed a letter to the state Professional Standards Commission, which certifies educators, informing the PSC that three allegations of unethical behavior made against Means in May don't warrant sanctions by the PSC.


  • Former UGA Professor Under Investigation by ICE



    Photo Credit: University of Georgia

    A former University of Georgia political science professor is under investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, according to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. 

    GBI spokesperson Nelly Miles confirmed today that the GBI is assisting Homeland Security in its investigation into Jamie Monogan, who formerly taught in the School of Public and International Affairs. 


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