Morse Returns as School Board Chairman

The School Board has a familiar face in the chairman’s seat, as it elected new officers during its annual organizational meeting Tuesday.

Jeff Morse (Dulles) will once again chair the board, and Ian Serotkin (Blue Ridge) will serve as the vice chairman.

Morse was nominated by Tom Marshall (Leesburg), and elected by of vote of 5-0-4. Outgoing Chairwoman Brenda Sheridan (Sterling), outgoing Vice Chairwoman Atoosa Reaser (Algonkian), Harris Mahedavi (Ashburn) and Serotkin abstained from the vote. Those four had backed Serotkin for the chairman’s post, but his nomination fell short of the five votes required.

Serotkin, who was participating in the meeting by a video link from a Houston, TX, hotel because of a flight cancellation, then was nominated by Andrew Hoyler (Broad Run) for the vice chairman’s seat and elected by a 7-1-1 vote, with Mahedavi abstaining and Denise Corbo (At Large) opposed.

Morse is a fourth-term School Board member, serving his first term in 2011. He served as chairman of the board in 2017, 2018, and 2019. He has lived in South Riding for 25 years.

Morse was praised by some parents during School Board meetings who said he represented a moderate presence on the board during the turbulent past two years. Morse is one of the four School Board members not facing a removal effort led by the Fight For Schools group.

“I want to thank my fellow board members, who expressed support in my election as chair, a position I don’t take lightly,” Morse said after the vote. “And our educators, the staff, the superintendent, our families, and especially my eight fellow colleagues. Finally I want to personally thank Ms. Sheridan and Ms. Reaser, who guided us through the most turbulent times in recent history. Your tireless work over the last year is sincerely appreciated.”

Serotkin is serving in his first term on the School Board, and chairs the Curriculum and Instruction Committee. Serotkin is one of the targets of the removal effort. The petition to remove him has not been filed, but Fight For Schools announced in October that it had enough signatures to satisfy the filing requirement.

Fight for Schools Executive Director Ian Prior issued a statement supporting Morse’s election.

“While we have not agreed with every vote Mr. Morse has made, he has proven during his tenure on the board to be a reasonable and responsible public servant who listens to his constituents,” Prior stated. “The issues with Loudoun County Public Schools that have been exposed over the past two years will require strong leadership from the chair, and Mr. Morse is to be commended for stepping up to repair the damage that has been done and rebuild trust with the community. We look forward to working with him to make that happen.”

Loudoun County Circuit Court judges were scheduled Wednesday to hear motions in the removal petition efforts against Sheridan and Reaser.

9 thoughts on “Morse Returns as School Board Chairman

  • 2022-01-04 at 7:43 pm

    I like Mr. Morse. He wouldn’t have been my first pick. But I agree he tends to be a moderating influence. He got along well with Leslee King, whom I adored. I hope she’s looking down & smiling. It will be interesting to see how well Mr. Morse works alongside Mr. Serotkin, since the two have disagreed sharply in the past. As for Fight For Schools, they need to lay off LCSB. Run your own candidates next year. Meanwhile, leave Brenda, Atoosa & Ian alone! Happy New Year Loudoun!

  • 2022-01-04 at 8:14 pm

    That was the best possible outcome. Congrats to Mr. Morse and good luck with solving the headaches.

  • 2022-01-04 at 8:58 pm

    So their guy wasn’t an approved option so they chose to sit out. And these are the people littleTimmy praises for doing a great job.

    The article states that judges “were to hear” the case on Wednesday. Did that changeable why?

  • 2022-01-04 at 9:11 pm

    Morse is an unmitigated disaster.

    1. He unconstitutionally censored speech on his social media pages.

    2. Morse supported Scott “hide the rapist” Ziegler for Superintendent.

    3. Morse pushed to shorten the school year from 180 days to 170 days so that LCPS employees (including his spouse) could get more bonbon days while our students, whose test scores dropped off a cliff, suffer. Not to mention how that hurts SpEd parents to have 10 fewer school days.

    4. Morse pushed to flood LCPS with astronomical spending increases. This included a $200M increase (from $1.3B to $1.5B) during the last two years when LCPS enrollment DROPPED.

    5. Morse supported outing a student victim of sexual assault in her federal lawsuit. And condones the teacher perpetrator continuing to have unmonitored access to middle school kids.

    Not many could be worse than Sheridan, but Morse is the worst of the worst.

  • 2022-01-04 at 9:49 pm

    Hopefully, a change at the helm will enable less tension and friction with speakers. I was quite disgusted at how Brenda Sheridan handled the public, especially canceling public comment because of a few people who cheered and booed speakers. Shes become a cold-hearted bureaucrat. Having co-chaired the Board of Supervisors Joint Schools Committee with Jeff Morse (2012 to 2013) I believe he will handle the gavel better and try to strike some compromise with parents mightily upset at the “equity education}” and mask mandates, etc. etc. But he is in the minority on this Board , which is hyper politicized by the woke anti-racist mob. Best of luck , Mr. Chairman.

  • 2022-01-05 at 6:33 am

    Best decision that could be made! Now let’s demand more professional management from the staff which is well prepared and well paid to perform. 1 Stop closing all the schools when only a few have an operational problem such as snow. 2 Start publishing ALL bullying and assault events by school by month. (no- you don’t have to name the children directly but residents should know how many are occurring in their schools). 3 Re-read state statute 22.1-79 and look up “utmost efficiency” if you don’t understand it. 4 Do not roll over and give superintendent same old contract for four more years meaning you don’t get to review him again during your current term – change it to two years so you can give him targets to meet and then evaluate how those targets have been met. 🙂

  • 2022-01-05 at 10:17 am

    Let’s see if this change represents a move away from the insane policies of 2020 and 2021. Sheridan, Reaser and Ziegler have engaged in scorched-earth politics with education and that only hurts children and the community.

  • 2022-01-05 at 11:36 am

    Who cares what Ian Prior has to say? He leads a fringe group that operates in bad faith. I mean, FOIA requests for e-mail correspondence from ideological opponents and parents of trans children? Disgusting.

  • 2022-01-05 at 3:52 pm

    Jeff Morse was and is a nefarious fooler. 🙁

    Virginia Sgp thank you for the refresher with the specifics: a LCSpard does not change its spots.

    May our righteous God and His Son Jesus Christ eradicate it in short order.

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