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Largest school district in North Carolina hires back Mississippi school’s short-term chief

North Carolina’s largest school district has hired a longtime local and statewide education administrator to become its next superintendent.

The Wake County Board of Education voted 8-1 on Tuesday for Robert Taylor to begin serving in the role on Oct. 1, news outlets reported.

Taylor was hired last year as state education superintendent in his home state of Mississippi, but his time was cut short after the state Senate voted against his confirmation in March.

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Taylor, who will earn a base salary of roughly $327,000, stood out for his knowledge of North Carolina and his vision of where the Wake schools need to go, board Chairwoman Lindsay Mahaffey said.

Taylor had been working as Mississippi’s superintendent since January but he stepped down after the Republican-controlled Senate voted against him. He had been the unanimous choice of the state’s education board members.

Some Black Democrats said the rejection was at least partly because Taylor is Black and wrote years ago about the state’s racist history. One Republican who voted against his confirmation said he wanted a superintendent who had a better resume on improving low-performing schools.

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