To appoint or elect a school super -- voters decide

Published: Friday, April 4, 2014 at 09:17 AM.

In the final tally, the lone dissenting vote from the Board came from the vice chair, Gail Smith, who spent 30 years in education before retiring.

Asked to comment on Wednesday, Smith said, "The voters will decide now."

However, Smith said her nay vote came more than anything, as a plea to table the motion until workshops could be held and more information could be gathered to make an informed decision before voting.

Smith said that after discussion at the last School Board meeting she contacted the Florida School Board Association because she was concerned as to how the change might impact the budget.

Smith said the county now pays $109,000 per year to the present superintendent, but she was told that our sister counties to the south of us expect to pay $150,000-$175,000 for someone possessing the desired qualifications for the position.

"But we are a smaller county," said Smith. "Most appointed are in south Florida and are in larger counties. I was told $145,000 might be a good offer for Walton."

As for whether Walton County would be better off with an elected or appointed superintendent of schools, Smith said she does not have a strong opinion either way.

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