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BOE Member John Knox Responds to Superintendent Means’ Allegations

Tuesday Flagpole published a story about Clarke County School Superintendent Demond Means’ response to a complaint filed with accreditation agency AdvancED in which he alleged that three school board members attempted to micromanage and usurp his authority.

The story did not include the full response from one of those board members, John Knox. He has provided an 11-page account of his interactions with Means, which you can read here. An excerpt:

My intent in meeting with Dr. Means on Apr. 9, 2019 was to express praise for recent recommendations, approved by the Board, for principal changes, and also to express concern over the potential negative impacts of a potential additional change in the context of the many principal changes that had already occurred during the 2018–19 school year. Recruitment and retention of staff is a legitimate concern of a Board of Education, as per the CCSD Strategic Plan 2018–2020 Priority #5 Professional Capacity, Goal Statement 3 (Recruit, Hire & Retain). I perceived my intent to be consistent with Balanced Governance principles and Board policy. While Dr. Means perceived my actions to be “unprofessional and threatening,” that was neither my intent nor, in my recollection, consistent with anything I said or did. I elaborate [in this document] on how my words and actions were consistent with Board policy and inconsistent with Dr. Means’s portrayal of them in his letter to AdvancED. My primary intent in having the April 9, 2019 meeting with Dr. Means was to help him in his job—not to undermine, not to threaten, and not to intimidate.