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EXCLUSIVE: ACPS Board Member says she will stay in her position despite calls for her resignation

Updated: Jun. 4, 2021 at 12:07 AM EDT
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) -Alachua County School Board Member Diyonne McGraw is defending her legitimacy as an elected official. A petition was created that raised questions about her listed address and whether or not it falls within District 2, which is the area she represents.

“No, I’m not going to be removed,” said McGraw.

According to the Alachua County Supervisor of Elections Office, McGraw’s listed address falls outside the boundaries of her district. However, she explains this wasn’t her mistake.

“I was elected in good faith. I depended on the Supervisor of Elections office. I went through the state as well and was qualified. I was elected by 30 some thousand people,” said McGraw.

RELATED STORY: Marion County School Board Member Beth McCall Resigns

A statement sent to TV20 from the Alachua County Supervisor of Elections Office states, “The Alachua County Supervisor of Elections is aware of claims that a 2020 candidate for the Alachua County School Board does not reside in the School Board district to which she was elected in August 2020. The address on the candidate’s Candidate Oath is located within District 4 of the Alachua County School Board. The candidate qualified and was elected to serve in District 2. While it is the candidate’s responsibility to understand qualifying requirements, our office does provide guidance to all candidates. Although the Supervisor of Elections Office does not have investigative authority, it will work with the proper authorities or investigative bodies to share information as it is requested and needed.”

Diyonne McGraw is defending her legitimacy as a member of the Alachua County School Board after...
Diyonne McGraw is defending her legitimacy as a member of the Alachua County School Board after an online petition raised questions about her listed address and whether or not it falls within District 2, which is the area she represents.(WCJB)

McGraw believes she has the documents to prove her home does not fall within the District 4 lines.

“I’m going to continue to walk by faith, not by fear. There is no malicious intent on my part, as I have documentation and maps. I live in District 2,” explained the board member. “At this time, I’m going to continue to serve.”

RELATED STORY: A petition is demanding Diyonne McGraw step down

McGraw thinks the timing of this is “weird” as it comes just days after Superintendent Dr. Carlee Simon presented her reorganization plan. Despite the creation of an online petition calling for McGraw to resign, she said she would continue working for Alachua County students.

“Sometimes, when you are trying to make change, it is difficult. Believe me, I am running to support the children. I am running to make sure every single child has opportunities here in Alachua County,” said McGraw.

RELATED STORY: “She really made an impact”: Parents try to convince ACPS leaders to renew Glen Springs Principal Deanna Feagin

A spokesperson for Alachua County Public Schools told TV20 in an email, “Confirming that a candidate for an elected office meets residency requirements is not within the purview of the district.”

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