Diyonne McGraw’s vacant school board seat raises questions about the future of the district

Updated: Jun. 18, 2021 at 10:40 PM EDT
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - Governor Ron DeSantis declared a vacancy for the district two seat held by Diyonne Mcgraw. On Friday, the governor explained what the vacancy means for the votes McGraw cast during her time in the position.

According to the governor, McGraw’s removal does not invalidate any vote she cast prior to her removal. But the order also doesn’t encourage or discourage any legal challenges to have those prior votes disqualified.

We asked Alachua County School Board spokesperson Jackie Johnson if this has been a distraction to board members.

“It certainly has been a topic of discussion and yes it’s certainly taken up a lot of oxygen in the room but we have continued to work,” said Johnson.

It is still unclear what this means for the superintendent’s plans for rezoning and reorganizing and what happens if a vote ends in a tie.

“We have a meeting coming up on Tuesday and that’s, right now the plan is to still have that meeting yes,” said Johnson.

Attorney Jeff Childers is representing Khanh-Lien Banko, among others in the case against McGraw. Thursday, he said he would discuss pursuing further legal action with his clients including having those votes thrown out.

“The court was leaving open the possibility of reviewing those votes so I think it is probably likely that we’re going to be looking back to see what Mrs. McGraw was voting on where she was a swing vote and deciding which of those votes it would be worth wild to challenge,” said Childers.

The next school board meeting is on Tuesday, one of the items is the superintendent’s reorganization plan.

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