by: Wendy Corona Updated:CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. —
Cherokee County's school board voted Wednesday to open an ethics investigation into one of its board members.
She is facing a felony charge and wrote a scathing letter sent to the district's accreditation agency, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
Even the accused board member, Kelly Marlow, voted in favor of opening and ethics violation hearing. The motion was proposed by Board Chair Janet Read and seconded by board member Michael Geist. It stems from a letter Marlow wrote to SACS on July 11 requesting an investigation into allegations of mismanagement and lack of leadership within the school system.
Woodstock resident John Hiland came to Marlow’s defense, stating, “Kelly Marlow has been asking about some of the things we’d like to know.”
However, the majority of the room was not on her side. The group Standing for Smart Citizens Rally Against Marlow served a dual message at the capacity crowd meeting at Cherokee High School.
“This board member will not resign. This board member will not do what she must, so you must do it for her,” one opponent said.
Variations of that message were echoed by many.
The Cherokee School District received full accreditation in January 2012. That affects about 39,000 enrolled students.
One student spoke up and alluded to Marlow’s recent behavior toward the superintendent, alleging that he tried to run her and two others over with his SUV. That landed Marlow a false statements felony charge.
“I ask those of you responsible for the current situation to reflect upon your actions and to resign for the good of all students,” said student Taylor Poole.
One speaker presented a petition with 1,200 signatures on it, asking Marlow to rescind her letter to SACS.