Pinellas interim superintendent vote not a sure thing for board member Wikle
On the day it fired superintendent Julie Janssen, the Pinellas School Board also quickly made overtures to former Polk superintendent John Stewart to take the district's reins on an interim basis. Too quickly for some, who said the selection of a caretaker should have the same kind of deliberation and transparency as a search for a permanent superintendent.
Board member Robin Wikle remarked that she wouldn't know Stewart if he stood in front of her. Still, she offered her support to opening contract talks with him.
"You know what? Because we are going to have the opportunity to come back to the table on Tuesday and share our concerns, I'm okay. I am comfortable with the way it went," Wikle said.
"I had to yield to the wisdom of the majority of the board who had been through this before. I have a vote on Aug. 30 to not agree with this interim superintendent. My vote counts and I am very comfortable with that. I think Ms. Lerner mentioned that this put a placeholder in. That was okay. Because if we hadn't put a placeholder in, then outside entities would have tried to put the placeholder in for us. Do you see what I mean? so the board should be the driver on who we hire as our next superintendent."
Visit the Gradebook at noon Saturday for our full interview with Robin Wikle.