Honeycutt explains abstention

Published 2:15 pm Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Why did Sherry Honeycutt abstain from voting on the new school superintendent?

By Italia Gregory

The Farmville Herald

Farmville District School Board Representative Sherry Honeycutt abstained from voting on the selection of Prince Edward’s new school superintendent due to missing interviews with the candidate.

“During the time of the interviews, I was called out of state for an unavoidable family matter, so I unfortunately had to miss the interviews,” Honeycutt said.

“Because I didn’t have the opportunity of meeting the candidates, I didn’t feel it was appropriate for me to vote on a selection, so I abstained.”

Buffalo District Representative and Board Chairman Russell Dove said Honeycutt was unable to participate in the interviews, adding that typically boards members will abstain from voting if they feel enough information has not been obtained to make a good decision.

Dove announced Saturday that Dr. Barbara Johnson had been named the new school superintendent, succeeding Dr. David Smith (see Page A1 story).

Honeycutt said, “after listening to the enthusiasm that each of the board members expressed for our candidate, I feel very confident in the selection. I think our new superintendent will bring continued vitality, with a different perspective of our community, yet a keen appreciation of our local heritage.”

Dove said he supports Honeycutt’s decision to abstain from the voting process.

“It appears that (Johnson) has some fresh ideas that she is bringing with her, yet is willing to listen and learn too,” said Honeycutt.

“I am very excited and confident about the future of the Prince Edward County Schools, and know the community will welcome her with the same enthusiasm as the board has expressed to me.”

Dove said while abstaining fails to give a district representation and a voice on the matter, “there are valid reasons (to do so).”