CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -- West Virginia's Board of Education has affirmed its firing of Jorea Marple as state schools superintendent.
The board voted 6-2 Thursday after public comment sharply critical of Marple's ouster. Nineteen people stood to praise Marple, denounce her firing or call for her reinstatement.
Thursday's vote followed a 90-minute closed door session by the board. Member Lloyd Jackson joined the five who had voted to fire Marple at a Nov. 15 meeting.
Concerns about whether the board had earlier followed the state open meetings law prompted Thursday's discussion. A pending legal challenge asks the Supreme Court to void Marple's firing under the open meetings law.
Thursday's meeting agenda also includes the hiring of a new superintendent. Board President Wade Linger has endorsed Randolph County schools chief James Phares for the job.