Judge issues injunction for fired Prince
George's, Maryland, superintendent
UPPER MARLBORO, Md. - A state judge issued a
temporary injunction late Sunday that delayed the firing of
Superintendent Iris T. Metts by the Prince George's County
The 10-day injunction, issued by Chief Circuit
Court Judge William Missouri, prevents the school board from
removing Metts, a former Delaware secretary of education, until
further hearings can be held regarding her dismissal.
Metts plans to appeal her dismissal today to
state Superintendent of Schools Nancy Grasmick. Metts maintains
that the county school board cannot make an important personnel
decision without consulting a state Management Oversight Panel
named in 1999 to solve the county's education problems.
The board had voted 6-3 Saturday to remove the
controversial head of Maryland's largest school district after a
contentious 21/2-year term that was marked by infighting between
panel members and Metts.
The board wanted to install an interim
superintendent today, but Missouri's ruling will make that
Metts' attorney, Stuart
Grozbean, asked the court to issue the injunction because,
he argued, the board had overstepped its authority by firing
Metts without approval from a state advisory panel.
Lawyers for the school board told the court they
acted legally and that under Metts' contract they have the
authority to dismiss her.
Late Sunday, board chairman Kenneth Johnson said
his interpretation of Missouri's ruling was that the board was
allowed to fire Metts, but must first give her 45 days notice
under state law.
"We already know what the next step is," said
Johnson. "We are going to issue the 45-day notice."
In an interview Sunday after the judge's ruling,
Grozbean said the ruling means the
board cannot "unilaterally terminate" Metts without approval