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Board member to resign

C.C. Bates

C.C. Bates

COVINGTON -- Newton County Board of Education member C.C. Bates won't finish out the remainder of her first term in office.

Bates announced Tuesday during the school board's monthly meeting that she plans to resign from her post in mid-June.

In front of her fellow school board members, her husband Daron and her children, Emilyann and Griff, she said her last board meeting will be June 15 because she and her family plan to move closer to her job at Clemson University. Her term was set to end in January 2011.

"It's bittersweet," she said.

Earlier this year, she began a position as assistant professor in the reading department at Clemson University's College of Education in South Carolina. Since then, she has been working between Newton County and Clemson, which has caused her to ask the other board members to move meetings at the last minute and not give her full attention, she said.

Bates said she appreciates the other board members working with her schedule and has enjoyed working with them.

She said ending her term in June would allow her to be involved until the budget cycle is nearly complete.

"We appreciate your expertise," said school board Vice Chair Cathy Dobbs. "You certainly brought a lot of education and expertise that we didn't have ... and really gave us a lot of vision."

Bates is a native of Greenville, S.C., and a graduate of Georgia State University with a Ph.D. in language and literacy education and of the University of South Carolina with a master's degree in early childhood education and a bachelor's degree in media arts.

She is a former teacher in South Carolina and at Fairview Elementary in Newton County; she was Teacher of the Year in Greenville and Newton County and a semifinalist for the Georgia TOTY in 2000. During her time in Newton County, she also has been involved with Friends of the Newton Library, the Learning Center and Covington First United Methodist Church.

Newton County School System Superintendent Steven Whatley said as the school board has done in the past with other vacancies, the remaining board members will select someone to fill Bates' seat from June until January when a candidate will take office after the general election on Nov. 2, as dictated by state election laws.