WJTV News Channel 12 - DURHAM: Durham names new schools superintendent

Durham names new schools superintendent

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Bert L'Homme will assume superintendent duties for the Durham Public Schools system effective July 14. Bert L'Homme will assume superintendent duties for the Durham Public Schools system effective July 14.
DURHAM, N.C. -

The Durham school board unanimously voted Thursday for a new superintendent.

Bert L'Homme will assume superintendent duties for the Durham Public Schools system effective July 14.

"Dr. L'Homme has the experiences, training and passion that make him particularly well-suited for DPS," said schools board chairwoman Heidi Carter. "For more than 35 years, Dr. L'Homme has been a constant champion for children, with a special focus on our most troubled youth."

L'Homme takes over for Eric Becoats, who resigned amid controversy Dec. 19. Becoats had been under fire for inappropriate use of an activity bus and questionable use of a school system credit card. Becoats charged more than $21,000 to the school system.

Becoats' resignation statement shows the school board agreed to pay him a one-time severance payment of $298,072.54.

The school board sought public input in the hiring process through 19 meetings with community groups and public hearings and an online survey in April.

Ray and Associates, Inc. conducted the superintendent search.

In addition to being assistant superintendent of instructional services for DPS, L'Homme was previously superintendent of Franklin County Schools and superintendent of Catholic Schools for the Archdiocese of Washington.

"To top it all off, Dr. L'Homme believes in the potential and people of Durham," Carter said. "Our community is already the one he calls home, and he has a personal commitment to providing our school system with the leadership to build on our many past successes, current promising initiatives, and future innovations to chart a course to the next level of excellence in DPS."

Becoats' resignation took effect Dec. 31.

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