Flint, MI—Melody Relerford has been appointed to the vacant seat on the Flint Community Schools (FCS) Board of Education. 

The Genesee Intermediate School District (GISD) Board of Education voted unanimously for Relerford to fill the vacant seat on the Flint Schools Board at a Nov. 28, 2022 meeting. 

“It’s a very important position,” Relerford told Flint Beat. “I don’t take it lightly. But I know if we work together, we’ll make it happen—it may not be easy, it may not be pretty, but we’ll move forward in a positive way.” 

Relerford will be attending her first FCS Board meetings on Dec. 6. Both the committee of the whole meeting and the regular board meeting will be held on that day.

The seat that Relerford fills was previously held by Danielle Green, who resigned in late August as part of a condition to dismiss a lawsuit for allegedly assaulting board member Laura MacIntyre. 

Melody Relerford (center), her longtime friend Sue Wylie (left) and her grandson Demarco Bodary (right) react as the Genesee Intermediate School District (GISD) Board of Education votes to appoint her to a vacant seat on the Flint Community Schools Board of Education during a GISD special meeting at the Davis Education Building in Flint, Mich. on Monday, Nov. 28, 2022. (Michael Indriolo | Flint Beat)

Relerford came to the seat by way of receiving the highest number of votes on the general election ballot among the school board candidates for the six-year term seats, which, due to a process change by GISD made her eligible for appointment to the vacant position. 

“Although a lot of things led up to this that maybe weren’t ideal … I can’t help but believe that it was all for a purpose, because it put us right up next to the general election and I think our Board obviously did the right thing in saying, ‘Let’s leave this to the vote of the community,’” GISD Superintendent Steven Tunnicliff said during the Nov. 28 meeting. 

The term of Relerford’s appointed seat ends on Dec. 31, 2022. She will then begin her newly elected term, which runs from Jan. 1, 2023 through Dec. 31, 2028. 

“We are very excited to be able to fill a seventh seat,” said Kevelin Jones, superintendent of Flint Schools, adding that Relerford “has a lot to bring to the table. I don’t know her personally, but I’ve heard many great things.” 

All in all, the FCS Board will see five new members join current board members Joyce Ellis-McNeal and MacIntyre over the next two months.

At next week’s Flint Schools Board meetings, other election winners Michael Clack and Terae King Jr. will be starting their newly elected terms, followed by Dylan Luna and Claudia Perkins who will begin their terms on Jan. 1, 2023.

Jones said he is “optimistic” about the five election winners joining Flint’s Board of Ed. and that there is “a lot of work” to be done to get them oriented to the district. 

All of the Flint Schools Board incumbents that were on the Nov. 8 ballot—Linda Boose, Allen Gilbert, Carol McIntosh and Chris Del Morone—lost in the election. When asked about that outcome, Jones said, “I stay focused on the children and staff, but my take is that Flint has spoken.” 

Nicholas is Flint Beat’s public health and education reporter. He joins the team as he graduates from Santa Clara University, Calif. Nicholas has previously reported on dementia and brain health, as...

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