Board moves to discuss superintendent’s future with district


Elias Podber

The Board of Education will discuss superintendent Meria Carstarphen’s future with the district, with the potential introduction of a new contract. Her current contract will expire June 30, 2020 if the board chooses not to present a contract, which will start the process of searching for a new superintendent. Carstarphen is pictured here at the opening of the Walden Athletic Complex in October, 2018.

Tyler Jones

The Atlanta school board will meet Monday, Sept. 9 to discuss the future of APS Superintendent Meria Carstarphen’s contract renewal, which currently expires June 30, 2020.

The board and superintendent have been in discussions for the past several weeks.

“If a contract extension is going to be given to the superintendent, then a contract will be presented to the public and then a vote will be taken to extend the contract,” said Michelle Olympiadis, District 3 Representative. “However, there is an option where the board can decide that no contract will be given … and then at that point, the board takes no action and the current contract serves as is.”

If no contract is presented, Dr. Carstarphen’s contract will expire in June and the process of finding a new superintendent will begin.

“I think what will happen on Monday is that the board will either come out to vote on an extension or the board will make an announcement as to how we are moving forward,” Olympiadis said. “It’s pretty much an A or B at this moment.”

However, board chairman Jason Esteves could decide to push the vote to another meeting, to which Olympiadis said is unlikely.

“If the board came out and stated no contract extension will be issued at this time, it would basically trigger the timeline to search for a new superintendent, which would mean pretty much the timeline that we are in right now because it is already September,” Olympiadis said.

Additionally, the district’s legal counsel has hired public relations firm Jackson Spalding, which Olympiadis expressed as standard practice. The board does not have access to the APS communications department, which is under the superintendent. 

Olympiadis was unable to disclose anything in regards to what the school board and superintendent have been discussing. Other sources on the board declined to comment until after Monday’s meeting.