Cooper nominates three to serve on State Board of Education

Posted May 2, 2017 4:26 p.m. EDT
Updated May 2, 2017 4:44 p.m. EDT

North Carolina State Board of Education

— Gov. Roy Cooper announced Tuesday he has nominated three people to serve on the State Board of Education. Members must be confirmed by the General Assembly and serve for eight years each.

Nominee John Buxton of Raleigh previously worked as deputy state superintendent of North Carolina public schools. He also served as senior education adviser to former Gov. Mike Easley and was coordinator of special programs for the North Carolina Teaching Fellows Program, which offered scholarships to students studying to become teachers.

A former high school teacher, Buxton is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Princeton University. If selected for the state board, he would serve as an at-large representative.

Current board member Reginald Kenan was re-nominated to serve as the second education district representative. Kenan is a native of Duplin County, where he practices law and serves on the county school board. He is a graduate of Guilford College and Campbell University and is active in his church and community.

Sandra Byrd was nominated as the eighth education district representative. Byrd lives in Asheville and is a retired associate professor of education from UNC-Asheville, where she served as assistant provost. She previously taught high school and was a Buncombe County Teacher of the Year. She is a graduate of Salem College, Western Carolina University and the University of South Carolina.

The State Board of Education supervises and administers the public school system and the educational funds provided for its support. The board has 19 members, including 14 appointed by the governor.

"Decisions made by the State Board of Education impact schools, students, teachers and families across North Carolina," Cooper said in a statement. "I'm pleased to nominate as members dedicated, experienced education leaders who know how critical quality public schools are to our state's future."

The current board is involved in a legal battle with Superintendent of Public Instruction Mark Johnson over who has constitutional authority to supervise the state's public school system.