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Thursday, April 14, 2011 - 8:16pm

Stakes Rise For School Boards

A bill that would let the governor suspend school board members of systems currently in danger of losing accreditation awaits Governor Deal’s signature.

The measure’s supporters say its main intent is to put pressure on the members of Atlanta Public Schools.

Atlanta high schools have been on probation since January because of its ineffective school board. Head of the Senate Education Committee Republican Fran Millar says the bill is necessary to put pressure on the board members because if Atlanta schools lose their accreditation it would hurt the rest of the state economically.

"It’s an incentive to make sure the Atlanta public schools to get this done. The governor probably has no intention of having to do this but we’ve got it out there because if they don’t get it done, we’ve got a safety net."

The bill also applies to all systems currently in danger of losing accreditation including Warren and Coffee counties.

Last year lawmakers passed a measure that gave the governor this power, but it only applied to board members elected after 2010.

This provision gets rid of the grandfather clause.