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Qualls hired to search for new director

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By Damon Lawrence

The Roane County Board of Education picked Wayne Qualls to assist in the search for a new director of schools.

“We felt like we’ve had pretty good service with Mr. Qualls,” Board Member Danny Wright said.

Qualls has led past searches for the board, including ones that ended with the hiring of Toni McGriff, Gary Aytes and Leah Rice Watkins.

“I think we made a great decision by hiring Mr. Qualls,” Board Member Mike “Brillo” Miller said. “I think he’ll do a super job. He has all the other times we’ve used him.”

The board is looking for a director because Watkins resigned in June to take the same position in Obion County. Aytes, who served as director from 2012-2016, was hired as interim director following her departure.

Board Chairman Nadine Jackson said Qualls charges $6,000 plus expenses, but he’s agreed to give the board a $1,000 discount because Watkins only stayed for two years.

“That is the figure we’re talking about,” she said.

The vote to hire Qualls happened during Thursday’s school board meeting.

It was unanimous.

The board also considered conducting the search itself or hiring the Tennessee School Boards Association.

“Conducting ourselves, we felt like it was too intensive,” Wright said.

“We really couldn’t do the job we needed to do. The cost was a little bit more with the other vendor that we looked at. There was some things we didn’t need.”