Wednesday, June 12, 2024

York County School Board Elects New Chair, Vice Chair in Special Meeting

York County School Board (YCSD)

YORK COUNTY — A special meeting of the York County School Board on May 28 ended in a 3-2 vote to remove Lynda Fairman as chair of the school board.

Board member Kim Goodwin made a motion during the meeting to remove Fairman as chair, citing that what the board has been through in the last few months has been unnecessary.

“Over the last few months, I’ve had to sit and watch as a community was at odds with one another, I’ve watched as board members have been at odds with one another, and I just find that it’s unnecessary, what we’re going through, and I think its time that a leadership change is needed to move us forward. When we break it all down, what we’re here for is, we’re here for students and we’re here to see that they are taken care of,” Goodwin said.

Board members Zoran Pajevic and Fairman voted against the motion.

The vote to remove Fairman comes after months of concern voiced by citizens at board meetings and the creation of a social media organization called Save YCSD.

Board member Mark Shafer then motioned that Goodwin take over as chair. Goodwin was elected on a 4-1 vote, with Fairman the only vote against.

Goodwin then motioned to nominate board member James Richardson as vice chair, which passed by a 3-2 vote, with Fairman and Pajevic voting against.

“I am committed to moving our school board and the school division forward with a renewed focus on the needs of our schools, students, families, and teachers. I want to thank Mr. Richardson, Mr. Shafer and Mr. Pajevic for their support in naming me chair. My goal is to restore trust and strengthen relationships within our community by listening to and addressing your concerns. Ultimately, we all share the same goal: to inspire and support student success and if we can look forward, rather than backwards, we can do just that,” Goodwin said.

Richardson released a statement following the meeting.

“I look forward to working closely with our new chair and to helping her grow and succeed in this role as we move forward. She has shown resilience and a willingness to address the issues and criticism facing both our board, and herself, head-on. Over the last few months, she has visited our schools, met with families and community members to listen to their concerns and learn more about their expectations for her in this role,” Richardson said. “I am committed to fostering a cooperative spirit among all board members. We will not always agree on every topic — and that’s okay — but together, we can and will work collaboratively with families and staff to prioritize the success and well-being of our students.”

Victor Shandor, York County School Division (YCSD) Superintendent, added, “I believe Mrs. Goodwin and Mr. Richardson have the best interests of our students, staff, families and community in mind. I look forward to supporting them in their roles, reestablishing positive relationships between the board and staff, and focusing on what’s best for students.”

The meeting was not streamed on the YCSD YouTube, but a clip of the vote was posted to the Save YCSD YouTube account.

The next meeting of the York County School Board will be on June 10 at 4:30 p.m. at York Hall.

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