Nearly 4,000 responses in superintendent search survey

JONESBORO – The results of Clayton County Board of Education’s long-awaited superintendent search survey are in but have yet to be publicized.

School officials said the survey was designed to collect community input on how the board should communicate its the search process.

The board has been at odds on the superintendent search process since 2012, when Luvenia Jackson was appointed temporarily to the post.

Jackson, who previously worked as an educator and administrator, returned to the district Oct. 1, 2012, as a temporary replacement for former superintendent Dr. Edmond Heatley, who resigned that September.

She was to serve temporarily for a few months as the board searched for Heatley’s permanent replacement.

However, she remains in the position, her extended contract is set to expire Dec. 31, and the board has no other superintendent prospects.

Clem Doyle is one of the board’s attorneys with Gregory, Doyle, Calhoun & Rogers LLC in Marietta. His firm was tasked with collecting the questionnaires.

He presented the results on compact discs during the board meeting Monday. The discs contained a 100-plus page spreadsheet of input from the community.

“It was my goal to try to protect this process,” said Doyle. “So I didn’t want to interpret the results.”

The collection process lasted longer than anticipated. The survey was initially made available for a 30-day window between March 15 and April 15, but the questionnaires continued to pour in nearly a month later.

Doyle said the firm expected 1,000 surveys but received more than 3,800.

“We had responses coming in as late as last week,” he told the board Monday. “Our solution was that we did not accept results after May 1.”

Doyle said there were 3,867 total survey responses — 2,518 electronic responses and 1,349 paper surveys.

Board member Charlton Bivins questioned the point in conducting the survey.

“I think this has been a waste of money and a waste of time,” said Bivins.

Bivins said he was confounded that the board collected surveys to determine how the board would conduct future surveys on a superintendent search.

Member Jessie Goree, who helped devise the survey process alongside fellow member Mary Baker and Vice Chairwoman Dr. Alieka Anderson, defended the survey.

“I believe we need to follow the process,” said Goree.

Check back with the Clayton News Daily for updates.