Kenneth Wheeler to be named to TPSD board

By Emily Le Coz

TUPELO – Mayor Jack Reed Jr. will name community activist Kenneth Wheeler to the Tupelo Public School District Board of Trustees this week.

Wheeler heads security at the North Mississippi Medical Center and is a longtime community volunteer, having participated in the Police Athletic League, Association for Excellence in Education, Boys and Girls Club and the Mississippi Parent Leadership Institute.

If the City Council approves his nomination Tuesday, Wheeler will begin his five-year tenure on the school board immediately.

He will replace Lee Tucker, whose term expired last month.

The Tupelo Public School District has weathered more than a year of turmoil including the abrupt resignation of its former superintendent and the controversial firing of a popular high school choral director.

Just five members sit on the board, which sets policy and can hire and fire superintendents. It also can uphold or overturn the hiring and firing decisions of the superintendent.

For this reason, city leaders have been careful to screen possible candidates for a school board position. Reed said he interviewed Wheeler twice before recommending him privately to the council.

Each council member also was given an opportunity to meet one-on-one with Wheeler.

Once the city appoints a school board member, it has no control over that member or the board.

Read Tuesday’s Daily Journal for the full story.