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Randolph County Superintendent Being Considered for State Superintendent Job

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The president of the West Virginia Board of Education said he will recommend Dr. James Phares, Randolph County Schools Superintendent, to fill the vacancy created by the termination Thursday of State Superintendent Jorea M. Marple.

Phares said he's humbled and honored to be considered.

Phares said it's just a recommendation, but if the board approves Phares next Wednesday he said he's ready to take the job.

"I have made it known if the board does appoint me that I will accept the appointment and be ready to be in service of the West Virginia's state board of education and all the children in West Virginia," Phares said.

Phares said if he is chosen, the Randolph County Board of Education will have to vote to accept his resignation and appoint an interim superintendent.

Phares has served as superintendent since June 2009. Before that he was superintendent of Marion County Schools from July 2003 to May 2009. He also worked as superintendent in Pocahontas County from 1998 to 2003.

--Original Story--

Randolph County Superintendent Dr. James Phares is being considered to fill the position of West Virginia's Board of Education Superintendent

West Virginia Board of Education President Wade Linger released a statement Thursday evening.

The W.Va. Board of Education has appointed Deputy State Superintendent Chuck Heinlein as the new state superintendent of schools until the board is able to hire a longer-term individual to serve in that position.

State law does not allow the position to remain vacant.

Linger has indicated that at a special meeting called for Wednesday, Nov. 21, he will recommend the board hire Phares to fill the position.

The Associated Press reported that the state's board of education has fired state schools Superintendent Jorea Marple.

Department of Education spokeswoman Liza Cordeiro said the board voted 5 to 2 on Thursday to terminate Marple's contract.

Cordeiro said board members Jenny Phillips and Priscilla Haden opposed the firing. They announced they will resign from the board, effective Dec. 31.

Marple said she was surprised by the decision. She said she had received only encouragement.

Marple said she hopes to continue to be an advocate for children and teachers.

Groups representing teachers and school workers praised Marple. They said they're dismayed by her firing and the two resignations.

Marple had served as the state's schools chief since March 1, 2011.

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