Angie Swiger resigns from county school board

By Cliff McCollum
Posted 12/11/17

In a surprise move during Tuesday’s Baldwin County Board of Education meeting, board member Angie Swiger resigned from her position on the BCBE, effective immediately.

Swiger, who represented …

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Please log in to continue

Log in

Angie Swiger resigns from county school board

Posted

In a surprise move during Tuesday’s Baldwin County Board of Education meeting, board member Angie Swiger resigned from her position on the BCBE, effective immediately.

Swiger, who represented Gulf Shores, Orange Beach, Elberta and Bon Secour on the board, read from a letter of resignation she’d written at the end of the board’s December meeting.

The letter read as follows:

“There have been a lot of questions lately in regards to my service on this board, where my allegiance lies, and how I intend to move forward.

“In my nine years of service to this board, Baldwin County Schools, and District 5, I have always been honest, fair, and forthright. My impeccable reputation speaks for itself, and I have worked very hard to be a strong advocate for Baldwin County and for ALL of District 5 including Elberta, Orange Beach, and Gulf Shores. I ran for the seat to give those communities a voice, and because of that voice, Elberta will now have the high school they’ve dreamed about for years.

“Gulf Shores and Orange Beach was the first feeder pattern to have a 1:1 program Kindergarten through 12, a foreign language program starting in first grade, and 10 college and career academies, a program that has been applauded by Dr. Bice and over 400 visitors and has been replicated in some of the tops school systems across the country.

“We have created a dual enrollment program through Costal Alabama Community College that offers 13 different college level opportunities for students in academics and career tech.

Through our partnership with SBRMC, we were able to open a full time teaching facility in Orange Beach for students in the Health Sciences Academy and through our partnerships with the cities of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, we have created opportunities to build college resumes and career opportunities for students in fire science, criminal justice, EMT programs, horticulture, engineering, and the arts (just to name a few).

“When I was elected to this board, it always was and always has been my intention to help create a school system so great that no community would have the desire to split. I have worked tirelessly to build and rebuild relationships in this county and in the last two years, have worked very hard to find a way for the island and the county to partner for the benefit of the children involved.

“At the end of the day, Gulf Shores has made the final decision to form a separate system and we must all move on from there.

“My dedication and commitment to this board and to my district has been unwavering and I have no doubt that the future of Baldwin County and the future of Gulf Shores is bright.

Although I have served ALL areas of my district effectively and equitably, my passion, commitment, love, and support for my Gulf Shores Community, its citizens, and its children is no secret. After a great deal of thought and consideration, I have come to the conclusion that my heart truly lies in my city and I have completed the job that 61 percent of the Gulf Shores voters elected me twice to do.

“Therefore, This letter shall serve as my immediate resignation from the Baldwin County Board of Education. Thank you to the incredible staff whom I have had the pleasure of working with for so many years. You are second to none. I have no doubt that President Christenberry and Superintendent Tyler will work swiftly and fairly to fill my seat with a quality candidate who’s focus will be to serve the children of Baldwin County and District 5 with transparency and integrity.

“Thank you.”

Superintendent Eddie Tyler said he was surprised by Swiger’s decision but thanked her for her years of service to the county’s children.

"We greatly appreciate Mrs. Swiger's service to the children and employees of Baldwin County Public Schools,” Tyler said. “She has a servant's heart and a passion for public education. We wish her all the best and again, we're very grateful for her service."

BCBE President Cecil Christenberry echoed Tyler’s remarks.

“She’s been on this board for nine years, and she’s seen a lot of changes,” Christenberry said. “This situation is unusual and a new realm for us and her decision was a surprise, but I think it was the right thing to do under the circumstances of where she is. I appreciate her service and what she’s done for the children of that district.”

Orange Beach Mayor Tony Kennon, who had been critical of Swiger remaining on the board following the school split by the city of Gulf Shores, said he was thankful Swiger decided to resign.

“I’m very appreciative of Mrs. Swiger stepping down,” Kennon said. “I think it was the right thing to do, and we will now talk with (Elberta) Mayor Hamby and others to start to pursue finding that right individual to represent everyone.”

According to Baldwin County Schools staff, the board will now advertise Swiger’s open position and it has 30 days to appoint a replacement to the position to complete the remainder of Swiger’s term, which ends in 2020.

Crystal Cole contributed to this report