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Edwards resigns as Superintendent of Dothan City Schools

Dr. Phyllis Edwards discusses school consolidation plans in this 2019 photo.
Dr. Phyllis Edwards discusses school consolidation plans in this 2019 photo.(GrayTV)
Published: Sep. 14, 2020 at 6:09 PM CDT
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DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) - The resignation of Dothan Superintendent Doctor Phyllis Edwards has been accepted by the school board and is effective immediately.

The board also appointed Dennis Coe as interim superintendent on Monday night.

Edwards began work in 2018 and, amid high expectations, overhauled Dothan public schools. She ditched popular magnet schools, combined two high schools into one, packed another campus with 1800 7th and 8th graders and created neighborhood schools for younger students. She also closed several other schools, citing dwindling enrollment and high maintenance costs.

Her plans did not sell well and convinced some parents to defect, opting for private schools and to purchase new homes in nearby districts.

Edwards also became embroiled in a controversy with band boosters who believe she snubbed them and annoyed parents with her plans to cut Honors classes. She later backed off that idea.

In the end, though, the pandemic may have been the biggest contributor to Edwards' resignation. She has rarely been seen publicly for months, choosing to spend much of her time at her Florida home.

Sources tell WTVY her absence annoyed some school board members.

Edwards, who is 69, has not issued a statement and did not attend the board meeting conducted via Zoom.

Copyright 2020 WTVY. All rights reserved.

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