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Fifth board member resigns from Odyssey Charter School board

Delaware Public Media

Another board member resigned from a troubled charter school just outside of Wilmington late last week. 

Michael Kirifides announced his resignation from the Odyssey Charter School board to a fellow board member Thursday night. He said his resignation was strictly due to a family health issue. 

He joins four other board members who stepped down since the school was put on formal review by the state several weeks ago. 

The school’s board was criticized for comments made by members at a meeting last month about building a fence or wall between the Greek-themed charter school and the dual-language Academia Antonia Alonso charter school next door. 

That school’s board president, Maria Alonso, in a statement says Kirifides’ resignation “one more step in the right direction.” She is still calling for the resignation of an Odyssey administrator she says led the laughter that followed what she called racist remarks.

Odyssey faces review over the comments and possible failure to fulfill probation conditions related to board composition imposed last summer.

With Kirifides’ resignation, members not associated with the Greek fraternal organization that helped found Odyssey now hold an even greater majority— which they gained for the first time last week following a change to the board’s charter in December. Three board seats remain vacant. 

Sophia Schmidt is a Delaware native. She comes to Delaware Public Media from NPR’s Weekend Edition in Washington, DC, where she produced arts, politics, science and culture interviews. She previously wrote about education and environment for The Berkshire Eagle in Pittsfield, MA. She graduated from Williams College, where she studied environmental policy and biology, and covered environmental events and local renewable energy for the college paper.
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