Herring said she’s “committed to getting it right for the children we serve” and said she looks forward to improving outreach and communications. She also thanked the board for its “bold and candid and supportive leadership.”
“I just want to express my appreciation for having the opportunity to step into this role just a little over a year ago during what we all know has been one of the most unique times in the history of public education globally,” she said.
Board member Nancy Meister, who this month is concluding her final term as the north Atlanta representative, cast the lone vote against the extension.
Meister was one of three board members who wanted to retain former Superintendent Meria Carstarphen when the board decided in 2019 not to renew her contract. Meister also cast the lone vote against hiring Herring, saying then that it wasn’t wise to switch leaders during a pandemic.
Asked about her Monday vote, Meister provided a statement to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution: “After 12 years on the board that oversaw four superintendents, I feel my vote was the right decision for myself, and the families of Atlanta Public Schools.”
The board also approved two other changes to Herring’s contract.
She now will receive 10 paid “wellness days” a year. Those are to be used for mental health-related activities and are in addition to the 20 vacation days and other sick days she earns annually.
Esteves said the move is in line with the district’s commitment to caring for employees’ wellbeing.
The board also removed a clause that would have required Herring to pay the district a sum of money — $100,000 in her first year, $75,000 in her second year, and $25,000 in her third year — if she were to quit before her initial term ended.
“She’s been in service for a year and a half, and she’s still here so we wanted to take that provision out,” Esteves said.
Name: Lisa Herring
Hired by APS: July 2020
Previous position: Superintendent of Birmingham City School District in Alabama
Education: 1994 graduate of Spelman College’ master’s degree from the University of South Carolina, doctorate from Georgia Southern University