Former Wake County Superintendent Del Burns is stepping back into the public eye to issue candidate endorsements and to speak out on the state of the school system.
In a press release today, Jack Nichols, a Democratic candidate for Wake County commissioner, announced he's been endorsed by three former Wake superintendents, including Burns. Nichols has been a harsh critic of the Republican majority on the school board and is running against Republican incumbent Paul Coble
"Jack Nichols is a consensus builder, and understands that when it comes to our children and our tax dollars, we must make decisions based on data and research, not ideologically driven agendas,” Burns said in the press release.
Burns had accused the Republican majority on the school board of engaging in political partisanship and criticized them for eliminating the diversity policy in media interviews in February. Those interviews led to him being put on paid administrative leave for the last four months of his tenure leading up to his June 30 resignation date.
Also endorsing Nichols today are Bill McNeal and Bob Bridges. All three former superintendents are Democrats.
Burns is also speaking out an interview that will be aired at 6 p.m. tonight by WRAL-TV. Burns had been turning down numerous requests for interviews since the board put him on leave.
Click here to view the press release. Burns is also co-chairman of a group called "Educators for Nichols."
Click here for a current list of members of Educators for Nichols. In addition to the three former superintendents, you've got the current Wake NCAE President Tama Bouncer, past Wake NCAE President Jennifer Lanane and NEA Executive Director John Wilson.
Burns said in the interview that the scrapping of the zone plan on Tuesday presents a great opportunity for the school system.
‘They have hit the pause button for a moment,” Burns said. “It’s time to reflect and determine what it is we really want for the future and then find a way to begin addressing that, honoring the values for everyone.”
Burns also said he's writing a book about his experiences.