State may remove Prince George's County school board chair
UPPER MARLBORO, Md. - The Maryland State Board of Education has taken steps to remove the appointed school board chair in Prince George’s County.
This week, the state board voted to issue charges of removal for Dr. Juanita Miller, according to Lora Rakowski, spokeswoman for the Maryland State Department of Education.
"(Miller) may request a hearing before an administrative law judge at the Office of Administrative Hearings," said Rakowski in an email.
The vote comes nearly a year after six elected Prince Georges County school board members petitioned to remove Dr. Miller.
PGCPS board members petition state to remove board chair
It was after Dr. Miller canceled school board meetings during the pandemic saying the meetings couldn’t go on due to misconduct claims she made about those elected board members.
There was also a bitter feud over hiring a board attorney that caused the board to go without legal counsel for months, something board members said violated state law.
There is a high threshold to remove a board member from office that includes: misconduct in office, immorality, incompetency, and willful neglect of duty.
Rakowski said she couldn’t give specifics on the board’s findings. She said Miller would be formally notified in a letter next week.
Thursday evening, Miller told FOX 5’s Lindsay Watts that she wasn’t aware of the state board’s vote.
RELATED: PGCPS board chair wants to stop board meetings while board is investigated
When asked if she would resign, she replied, "Why should I?"
She said she would seek legal counsel and go before the judge to challenge the board’s decision. The state board will then make a final decision on the removal and the governor will have to sign off on it.
"It is what it is," Miller said.
According to records reviewed by FOX 5, only three board members have been removed by the state in the last decade.
"I feel vindicated," said PGCPS board member Shayla Adams-Stafford, who was one of six who called for Miller’s removal. "Because there were so many attacks on the board members who did try to speak out about her behavior. And now we can see that the state board, people that are unaffiliated with our board of education, the state board of education had to come in and really honestly read through the facts, very plain to see, and make a decision."
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Prince George’s County Councilman Edward Burroughs was also part of the removal effort during his time on the board.
"Dr. Miller’s actions have caused irreparable harm to our students and to our staff," Burroughs said. "While every other board across our state was working together to bring back our students safely in the middle of this pandemic, the Prince George’s County Board of Education was shut down."
Miller was appointed in January of 2021 by County Executive Angela Alsobrooks.
In an emailed statement Friday, a spokeswoman for Alsobrooks said: "We respect the process currently underway with the Maryland State Board of Education, and we will allow that process to reach its conclusion."