ATLANTA -- The Georgia Professional Standards Commission won't investigate former Alcovy High School principal LaQuanda Carpenter on allegations of purchasing alcohol while on a school trip and misusing school funds.
Jeff Meadors, who is a member of the Newton County Board of Education, filed a complaint with the PSC in January as a citizen based on what he learned through litigation discovery. In October, Carpenter withdrew a pending defamation lawsuit against Meadors that alleged that he commented about her or told others information about her to post on the Newton Citizen website.
Meadors' complaint alleged that Carpenter breached a code of ethics for educators by being at a school-related activity with students while under the influence of, possessing or consuming alcohol while on a band trip to Florida in 2010. The complaint also alleged that she misused public or school funds in regard to missing club funds at the school.
In June, after the alcohol issue was brought to the attention of Newton County School System Superintendent Gary Mathews, a school system investigation was conducted. Mathews reported that the evidence did not call for any disciplinary action. Mathews also addressed the missing funds issue in June, saying that school officials should have kept better records, but no evidence suggested that the funds were misused.
The PSC voted Thursday on the complaint, deciding that there was no probable cause to investigate any further.
Carpenter's last day at NCSS was Feb. 1, after previously being out on maternity leave since November. The Newton County Board of Education paid Carpenter and her husband Dennis Carpenter, who was deputy superintendent of Operations, nearly $70,000 as part of a settlement agreement after both submitted letters to NCSS requesting release from their contracts.