School Board Chairman Sheryl Gorsuch disagrees with Vice Mayor Kerry Donley’s calls for Alexandria City Public Schools' superintendent to resign.
“I was disappointed in Mr. Donley last night,” Gorsuch said, referring to Donley’s remarks during a Tuesday evening City Council meeting. “I think he had some reasonable statements and some questions that deserve answers. But drawing conclusions before the School Board has had a chance to do its job is inappropriate.”
The superintendent recently came under fire when results of an independent audit of the system’s Capital Improvement Projects showed deep flaws in the system, although no money was actually missing.
Gorsuch said the School Board will continue to have discussions about the results of the audit and how recommendations will be enacted.
“We believe Dr. Sherman is implementing the necessary reforms and taking the school system in the right direction,” Gorsuch said.
Gorsuch said Donley spoke with School Board Vice Chairman Helen Morris on Tuesday morning about what he planned to say at the council meeting. School Board member Yvonne Folkerts attended the meeting along with Gorsuch and Morris.
Morris told Patch that she was disappointed by Donley's remarks. "He is dead wrong in publicly calling for Dr. Sherman's resignation. The superintendent's tenure is wholly and solely under the School Board's authority," Morris said. "The Board takes our fiscal responsibility very seriously, and we are working closely with Dr. Sherman to correct all issues identified in the CIP Report. I would not presume to dictate Mr. Donley's actions regarding city procedures, and I expect the same courtesy from him."
ACPS Superintendent Morton Sherman told Patch on Wednesday afternoon: “I have tremendous respect for Mr. Donley and his exceptional service to Alexandria and the Commonwealth of Virginia. We disagree on the CIP conclusions. I am sure that Mr. Donley is frustrated and angry about the CIP situation, but not nearly as frustrated and angry as I am.
"The facts are clear: as soon as I knew that there was a problem, I alerted the board and the board attorney, stopped what was going on in the Facilities Department, called for an independent audit, made personnel changes and began to make changes in procedures and controls.
"I love this school division, am so deeply impressed with our students, staff, and families. We are on a very good path because of the hard work of so many people... with whom I look forward to working for several more years.”