Ceremony held without state superintendent - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

Ceremony held without state superintendent

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Teachers from across West Virginia flocked to Charleston Thursday evening to receive recognition for high achievement.

Jorea Marple helped organize the event, but that was earlier in the day. By the time teachers had arrived at the Embassy Suites for the awards ceremony, state superintendent Marple had been fired from her post.

"I think it's a surprise factor," said Dale Lee, the president of the West Virginia Education Association. "Dr. Marple was well respected across the state by teachers."

And so far, questions follow the surprise. It happened during a regular board meeting but wasn't on the agenda. Then members entered an executive session, took a short break, and re-convened..And with a 5-2 vote, Marple was out.

"If you listened to what Dr. Marple said earlier today, it's all about the kids," said Priscilla Haden, a former board member. "And that's what we're about, that's why we're here."

But now Haden is out too. She was one of the two board members who voted against firing Marple, and tendered her resignation right on the spot.

For those who work in the school system, they say this big shakeup is a reminder that the focus must remain on excellence in the classroom and not the politics of education leadership.

"This was indeed what it should have been," Lee said. "A celebration of exemplary schools. When you go into education, you go into it to do what's best for kids."