Green defends experience as he readies for new job

Maurice “Mo” Green said Friday that those who say his lack of teaching experience should prevent him from becoming superintendent of Guilford County Schools should talk with educators in Mecklenburg County.

“Talk to the educators here, from the school board on down to the teachers,” Green said Friday, one day after the Guilford County School Board voted 7-4 to hire the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools' deputy superintendent and chief operating officer.

“They will tell you about my dedication to the school system and its people,” added Green, who received a four-year contract with an average annual salary of $250,000.

Green was a lawyer when he was hired in 2001 by CMS to serve as general counsel. He held that post until 2006, when incoming Superintendent Peter Gorman promoted him to chief operating officer. He was named deputy superintendent in February, overseeing day-to-day operations of what was then the state's biggest school system

“I don't have that (education) background,” Green said Friday. “I can't create that.”

But Green said he will “show complete reverence” for the work of educators and added that he will “put education experts around me – and listen to what they say.”

Green said he expects to start work officially in Guilford County in early September and said Sept. 8 is being mentioned as a possible starting date. But he spent part of Friday in Greensboro, talking with employees and officials with his new school system, and he said he will make occasional trips there in coming weeks.

“As far as working here is concerned, I will keep working until Dr. Gorman tells me to turn in my keys,” Green added.