First Black superintendent in South Carolina county fired, then second one hired; CRT is banned

Deon Jackson was fired after the Berkeley County School District's newly elected board members, six of whom the right-leaning advocacy group Moms for Liberty backed, were sworn in.

It took only a couple of hours for a South Carolina school district to make some significant changes on Tuesday, including firing the first Black superintendent and prohibiting the teaching of critical race theory.

According to NBC News, Deon Jackson became district superintendent of South Carolina’s Berkeley County School District, the fourth largest in the state, on May 19, 2021. He has now been dismissed and his replacement — the district’s second Black superintendent — was hired just as quickly.

The newly elected board members, six of whom had the backing of the advocacy group, Moms for Liberty, were sworn in on Tuesday night. In addition to Jackson, they also fired the district’s attorney and formed a committee to decide whether they should ban books and materials from classrooms.

Moms for Liberty backed members fire Deon Jackson
Deon Jackson, the first Black superintendent of South Carolina’s Berkeley County School District, was fired on Nov. 15, 2022 and quickly replaced by the district’s second Black superintendent, Anthony Dixon. (Photo: Screenshot/YouTube/WCBD News 2)

District video shows that the board entered executive session during the early part of the meeting. Kathy Littleton, one of the Moms for Liberty-supported members, pushed to fire the district’s in-house lawyer, Tiffany Richardson, shortly after. She called for retaining Brandon Gaskins, a lawyer who served as the deputy chief legal counsel to former Gov. Mark Sanford.

The board replaced its chairperson with local attorney Mac McQuillin, who also had the support of Moms for Liberty. The members who the group backed now are a majority on the board. McQuillin immediately moved to terminate Jackson whom Anthony Dixon — a district administrator who will become the district’s second Black superintendent — will replace.

Audience members were not pleased with the firings of Jackson and Richardson, evidenced by their gasps and shouts.

“All right, listen up,” McQuillin told the audience, NBC reported. “We’re going to be respectful in this meeting. You may not agree with our votes, but I ask that you please be respectful and calm. What kind of example are you setting for our kids, disrupting a meeting like this?”

Moms for Liberty claims that over 500 school board candidates nationwide have received its endorsement this year and 49% of them have won.

The group hailed the victories of the six candidates in Berkeley County as proof that it can help flip a school board in favor of those who “value parental rights.” The candidates pledged to remove the “woke agenda,” increase curriculum transparency and practice budgetary prudence. 

Moms for Liberty created a Facebook post on Wednesday to celebrate the board’s first votes, saying that “6 new board members clean house first night on the job,” NBC reported.

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