Alamance-Burlington school board members voted unanimously during a special-called meeting Friday afternoon to hire former ABSS superintendent Dr. James (“Jim”) Merrill to serve as the school system’s interim superintendent.
Merrill is scheduled to begin work as the interim superintendent on January 1, 2022 and will serve in that role while a search is being conducted to locate a successor to outgoing superintendent Dr. Bruce Benson.
As interim superintendent of ABSS, Merrill will be paid a monthly salary of $21,500 through the end of June 2022. He retired as the superintendent of Wake County public schools in early 2018. Merrill previously served as superintendent of ABSS from 2000 until 2006 and was twice-named North Carolina Superintendent of the Year, in 2005 (while in Alamance) and 2017 (while serving as Wake County’s superintendent).
Merrill has 20 years of experience as a school superintendent, including six years in Alamance-Burlington Schools from 2000-2006; Virginia Beach City Public Schools in Virginia from 2006-2013; and Wake County Public Schools, 2013-2018.
He earned his Bachelor degree in English Education from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Masters in Administration from Appalachian State University and Doctorate degree in Education Administration from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.
Most recently, Merrill was asked to serve as the interim superintendent for Wayne County Schools in Goldsboro – amid financial and personnel-related controversies that resulted in abrupt resignations by that school system’s superintendent and finance officer during the spring of 2020.
Merrill served as Wayne County schools’ interim superintendent from June 2020 until December 2020. He is also a partner in an educational consulting firm, School Operations Specialists, which is based in Wake Forest.
School board members had entered into closed session to discuss confidential personnel matters; when they returned two hours later, they voted 7-0 to appoint Merrill as the interim superintendent of ABSS.
Merrill was present at the close of the special-called meeting and informal introduction Friday afternoon. He will be sworn into office at a later date. Merrill now lives on the Orange County side of Mebane.
The school board also made a decision on who to hire to conduct the search for the successor to Dr. Bruce Benson who asked to be relieved from his duties at the end of the year, cutting short his contract: https://alamancenews.com/illinois-co-that-did-last-search-which-produced-dr-bruce-benson-will-do-next-one-as-well/