injunction for fired Prince George's, Maryland,
UPPER MARLBORO, Md. - A state judge issued a temporary
injunction late Sunday that delayed the firing of
Superintendent Iris T. Metts by the Prince George's County
The 10-day injunction, issued by Chief Circuit Court Judge
William Missouri, prevents the school board from removing
Metts, a former Delaware secretary of education, until
further hearings can be held regarding her dismissal.
Metts plans to appeal her dismissal today to state
Superintendent of Schools Nancy Grasmick. Metts maintains
that the county school board cannot make an important
personnel decision without consulting a state Management
Oversight Panel named in 1999 to solve the county's
The board had voted 6-3 Saturday to remove the controversial
head of Maryland's largest school district after a
contentious 21/2-year term that was marked by infighting
between panel members and Metts.
The board wanted to install an interim superintendent today,
but Missouri's ruling will make that impossible.
Metts' attorney, Stuart Grozbean, asked the court to issue
the injunction because, he argued, the board had overstepped
its authority by firing Metts without approval from a state
Lawyers for the school board told the court they acted
legally and that under Metts' contract they have the
authority to dismiss her.
Late Sunday, board chairman Kenneth Johnson said his
interpretation of Missouri's ruling was that the board was
allowed to fire Metts, but must first give her 45 days
notice under state law.
"We already know what the next step is," said Johnson. "We
are going to issue the 45-day notice."
In an interview Sunday after the judge's ruling, Grozbean
said the ruling means the board cannot "unilaterally
terminate" Metts without approval from Grasmick.