Wake County Schools

Retired teacher unseats Prickett on Wake school board

Posted October 8, 2013

— Wake County school board member Deborah Prickett lost her District 7 seat by a sizable margin Tuesday to retired educator Zora Felton, according to unofficial election results.

With all 23 precincts reporting, Felton had pulled in about 58 percent of the vote, compared to Prickett's 42 percent.

Felton, a Democrat, taught in the Wake County school system for 25 years and received an endorsement from the Wake chapter of the North Carolina Association of Educators. 

"Every decision made by the Wake County Board of Education should be made with children's best interests in mind," Felton said during her campaign. "I will keep the focus on student success."

Prickett was elected to serve west Raleigh and Morrisville on the Board of Education in 2009 as part of a Republican-backed bloc responsible for a number of changes to how the school system operates, including a controversial move away from the district’s longstanding policy of busing for socio-economic diversity.

She was the only member of that bloc who sought re-election. The seats vacated by Chris Malone, Debra Goldman and John Tedesco were all up for grabs Tuesday.

In District 2, where Tedesco announced in July he wouldn’t seek re-election, Monika Johnson-Hostler defeated Matt Scruggs to serve southeast Wake Count, according to unofficial results. Johnson-Hostler is executive director for the North Carolina Coalition Against Sexual Assault and a PTA volunteer. Scruggs works in the automotive industry.

Retired principal Tom Benton topped attorney Don McIntyre to continue serving District 1 in northeast Wake County for a full four-year term, according to unofficial results. Benton was appointed to that seat in February after Malone left to serve in the North Carolina House of Representatives.

In eastern Wake County’s District 9, the race between Bill Fletcher and Nancy Caggia was still too close to call at 11 p.m., but unofficial results had Fletcher leading with 51 percent of the vote. Fletcher, who previously served 12 years on the school board, had been appointed to Goldman's seat earlier this year after she left to serve as executive director for a nonprofit.

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  • westernwake1 Oct 11, 10:25 a.m.

    If the new school board members believe that this recent election was a mandate to revert back to a "bussing for diversity" policy then they are sadly mistaken.

    Parents will not accept having their children forced to go to a different school EVERY SINGLE YEAR as their node is moved once again to support a failed diversity policy.

    If the board believes they can move back in time and impose this atrocity upon families again then they will voted out of office just as quickly as they were voted in.

  • Road-wearier Oct 11, 9:11 a.m.

    Impressive. If this election wasn't near complete rejection by the voters of the GOP Board's policies I don't know what is.

    "the board to me is there to provide oversight and decide overall policy....not to get involved in all of the minutiae." - tell that to the GOP legislature that's been messing about in all the minutiae of local governments.

  • westernwake1 Oct 11, 9:07 a.m.

    There are a couple members on the board who are unfit to serve, Deborah P. being one of them. Evans is the next one who needs to go.

  • luv2read Oct 10, 5:44 p.m.

    Thank God they are all gone... You know, the ones who turned us into a laughing stock. The only reason Tedesco did not run is he knew he would not win. Nobody wants that kind of mess going on on our board. It is obvious between Margito (sp) and Debra P.losses that even the ones who thought they would make good changes did not see that happen and why they were not reelected. It was no surprise to them, I am sure. They had so much backlash even from those who originally wanted them that they would never win reelection and why the other 3 opted for other things besides rerunning. Now maybe we can get back to it being about the kids and not about special interests.

  • btneast Oct 10, 1:04 p.m.

    I don't get why someone who has spent their life educating children would be a BAD thing for the board. Are folks complaining because of her party affiliation? It would seem so.

    Maybe so, but I prefer to have the board a little more diverse than all education professionals. Let the superintendent and his staff provide the educational prowess, the board to me is there to provide oversight and decide overall policy....not to get involved in all of the minutiae. Having all educators is inbreeding....thinking outside the box becomes infrequent, and old habits/practices tend to become the norm. Very few people question the way things are done, because everyone thinks alike. Having a teacher is not a bad thing, but stacking the board with all educational professionals would be a bad thing. Too many people accept anything that comes out of the mouth of an educator that has an advanced degree as gospel. No one questions anything.

  • ihatewralcensorship Oct 10, 10:59 a.m.

    JustAName...its not just the schools or the parents..its the lazy, gangsta, homeboy, gotta get me some dat, hate school attitude of the 'poor'. Translation: minority in the majority schools.
    http://www.amren.com/features/2012/04/white-teacher-in-an-la-school/

  • JustAName Oct 10, 8:53 a.m.

    "Leave the issue of whether our overall aggregate achievement is declining or not, we can agree that schools in poor areas are funded poorly, and their students are achieving poorly by most standards." -
    MARX

    When schools that have more free breakfast/lunch get more funding, how are they funded poorly? When schools that are in "poor areas" are made magnet schools and get funding for programs not offered in "non-poor areas", how are they funded poorly?

    It isn't the schools, it is the parents (or lack there of).

  • bji Oct 10, 8:40 a.m.

    injameswetrust2003 - selective memory or just a blatant hypocrite? Both are representative of GOP supporters!

  • Inside The Beltline Oct 9, 7:43 p.m.

    "The new board members' election does not represent most people, since only 2% of registered voters went to the polls." -injameswetrust2003

    And yet you screamed with excitement that the majority of North Carolina approved Amendment 1? More people voted to oust porkbelly than voted to approve ammendment 1 percentage wise, so what is it?

  • injameswetrust2003 Oct 9, 3:38 p.m.

    Can I use the same argument the Libs used back in 2009 when they weren't happy with the results? "The new board members' election does not represent most people, since only 2% of registered voters went to the polls."

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