Quantcast

New Wake Co. superintendent plans to keep out of board politics - Greenville, NC | News | Weather | Sports - WNCT.com

New Wake Co. superintendent plans to keep out of board politics

Posted: Updated:
Wake County School Superintendent Jim Merrill Wake County School Superintendent Jim Merrill
RALEIGH, N.C. -

Sarah Roe is getting a head start on back to school shopping for her rising Conn Elementary second grader.  She loves the faculty there.

"I think there's very qualified staff," Roe said, "but I don't think they all get the support they need."

She has not always been as happy with the school board making decisions.

"I think it's a shame there's been so much politicizing going on in the arguing on the school board and that kind of thing," Roe said.

Thursday, Wake County Schools turned a page as Jim Merrill officially took over as superintendent.

"I'm either naive, completely insensitive, or I don't just plain feel the political atmosphere," Merrill said.

Merrill downplayed the politics that have often defined this board. The former Virginia Beach school superintendent got the job with the backing of Democrats and he replaces Tony Tata, a Republican choice, who was fired last year by the democratic majority after a bussing debacle tainted the start of the school year.

Merrill says he will deal with those political battles very simply by staying out of them.

"Let our elected officials handle the politics here," Merrill said.

During a press conference on Thursday, WNCN asked him if he had any concern there might one day be a power shift, possibly resulting in his firing.

"Anything's possible," he replied, "but in my career, if I tend to my work, then that takes care of itself. That's how I approach it."

It's an approach Roe hopes will help keep the politics in the past.

"I think it's brought the school system down a bit," she said.  "Overall, I think we have good schools in Wake County."

Derick Waller

Derick is a reporter for WNCN covering crime, education, politics and just about everything in between. He has a knack for adapting to any story and consistently delivers information quickly across multiple platforms. More>>

  • Back To SchoolMore>>

  • Cars whiz by school buses as WNCN cameras roll

    Cars whiz by school buses as WNCN cameras roll

    Friday, August 22 2014 5:22 PM EDT2014-08-22 21:22:15 GMT
    WNCN's cameras caught drivers zooming past stopped school buses - a clear violation of North Carolina law.
    WNCN's cameras caught drivers zooming past stopped school buses - a clear violation of North Carolina law.
  • NC has stiff penalties for passing stopped school bus

    NC has stiff penalties for passing stopped school bus

    Friday, August 22 2014 10:36 AM EDT2014-08-22 14:36:56 GMT
    Thousands of motorists pass stopped school buses every day, and many of them may not even realize they are breaking the law. It's an issue that has received intense attention in North Carolina, with 13 children being hit, and killed, at bus stops since 1999. One survey on March 26 of this year recorded 429 times where a driver roared past a stopped school bus in Wake County alone. In Durham County, there were 89 violations that same day and Cumberland County had a whopping 210. Johnston Coun...
    Thousands of motorists pass stopped school buses every day, and many of them may not even realize they are breaking the law. It's an issue that has received intense attention in North Carolina, with 13 children being hit, and killed, at bus stops since 1999. One survey on March 26 of this year recorded 429 times where a driver roared past a stopped school bus in Wake County alone. In Durham County, there were 89 violations that same day and Cumberland County had a whopping 210. Johnston Coun...
  • 'Active shooter' drill to take place at Ligon Middle in Raleigh

    'Active shooter' drill to take place at Ligon Middle in Raleigh

    Friday, August 22 2014 10:29 AM EDT2014-08-22 14:29:39 GMT
    File photoFile photo
    The Wake County Sheriff's Office will hold an “active shooter” training exercise at Ligon GT Magnet School Friday morning.
    The Wake County Sheriff's Office will hold an “active shooter” training exercise at Ligon GT Magnet School Friday morning.
Powered by WorldNow

3221 South Evans Street
Greenville N.C. 27834

Telephone: 252.355.8500
Fax: 252.355.8568
Email: newsdesk@wnct.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.