4 Charleston Co. school board members raise questions about special meeting

Published: Sep. 9, 2023 at 2:00 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 9, 2023 at 11:30 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Four members of the Charleston County School Board are claiming a lack of transparency over what they call a “secretive special called meeting.”

Board members Courtney Waters, Darlene Dunmeyer-Roberson, Daron Lee Calhoun II and Dr. Carol Tempel called a news conference for Monday at noon.

The news conference is scheduled three hours before the special called meeting the group says was called by the “Moms for Liberty faction of the board” to discuss the contract of Charleston County School District Superintendent Dr. Eric Gallien. The group claims they “have not been privy to the purpose of the meeting or told why the superintendent’s contract is being discussed.”

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“On the heels of record-breaking test scores among all students in CCSD, elected officials of the Board of Trustees are again being forced to make whiplash decisions about the future of our children,” a news release from Waters, Dunmeyer-Roberson, Calhoun and Tempel states.

The release states that while Monday’s meeting was originally intended to be the “first public celebration of student achievement” on the SC Ready results, the community learned late on Friday that Gallien’s contract would “also be up for discussion in a separate special called meeting.”

Charleston County School Superintendent Dr. Eric Gallien assumed the role on July 1.
Charleston County School Superintendent Dr. Eric Gallien assumed the role on July 1.(Live 5)

The group claims the other board members “coordinated to set this meeting without informing” the other four members.

Board Chair Pamela McKinney declined to comment on the meeting.

Gallien’s contract began on July 1, when he became the highest-paid employee in the Charleston County School District’s history with a salary of $275,000. After the first year, his salary will increase by 2% annually.

Don Kennedy, the district’s former superintendent, was making $246,595. Kennedy succeeded Dr. Gerrita Postlewait, who was making $241,993 when she left the district in 2021.