published Thursday, January 20th, 2011

Search for Hamilton County Schools superintendent removed from board meeting agenda

by Kelli Gauthier

A motion to start the search for a new Hamilton County Schools superintendent -- more than a year before Jim Scales' contract expires -- narrowly missed being added to today's school board agenda.

Hamilton County Board of Education Chairman Everett Fairchild confirmed Wednesday that board member David Testerman approached him with the request. But after talking with Testerman and Scales, Fairchild decided to leave the item off the agenda.

"The feeling was that [Scales] has a contract and there's not grounds to deal with that contract right now," Fairchild said.

Scales' contract keeps him in office until 2012.

Testerman did not return a message Wednesday seeking comment.

Fairchild said the superintendent search resolution still could come up at tonight's meeting.

"If [Testerman] makes a motion and gets a second to it, we'd have to deal with it," he said.

During his re-election campaign last year, Fairchild said it was time for the superintendent to go.

Scales confirmed Wednesday that he had talked to Fairchild about the issue.

"I simply talked to Mr. Fairchild and said that the way it was being presented was against board policy and against my contract, and that's all I have to say about it," he said.

According to the school board's policy, finding a replacement superintendent is a responsibility of the board "when a vacancy occurs."

Contact Kelli Gauthier at or 423- 757-6249. Follow her on Twitter at

about Kelli Gauthier...

Kelli Gauthier covers K-12 education in Hamilton County for the Times Free Press. She started at the paper as an intern in 2006, crisscrossing the region writing feature stories from Pikeville, Tenn., to Lafayette, Ga. She also covered crime and courts before taking over the education beat in 2007. A native of Frederick, Md., Kelli came south to attend Southern Adventist University in Collegedale, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in print journalism. Before newspapers, ...

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rosebud said...

The TFP strikes again. "Superintendent search removed from board agenda." Except: it was NEVER on the agenda. How does it get removed when it was never there? Please explain in your next in-depth article.

January 20, 2011 at 8:03 a.m.
dendod said...

Dr. "Can't teach a dog to fetch a stick" Scales needs to GO!!!!!!!!!!! You want hear any of the school children in Hamilton County talking about this article because most of them CAN'T READ!!!! Wise up parents. Get some one to replace Scales and Tommy "Smoke and Mirrors" Krantz so your kids will learn at school something besides gang signs.

January 20, 2011 at 8:15 a.m.
dendod said...

Scales has our children so poorly educated that 72% in High School can't even read Gang Signs.

January 20, 2011 at 8:17 a.m.
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