Surry County Schools will terminate an assistant principal from Surry Central following his arrest last month on drug-related charges.
Benny Lee Baliles Jr., 31, was arrested on Feb. 7 by the Dobson Police. The school district immediately suspended him.
On Wednesday, the Board of Education met at Flat Rock Elementary School to hold a budget workshop for the 2017-18 fiscal year. Before that session began, the board went into closed session to discuss personnel.
When the group returned to open session, the board voted to start termination proceedings against Baliles.
District attorney Fred Johnson said last month that once the proceedings begins, the employee has 14 days to request a hearing.
Assistant superintendent Chuck Graham said holding the closed session Wednesday allows the board to start that two-week clock now, then the board can have the final termination vote at its next regularly scheduled meeting in April.
Dobson Police Chief Shawn Myers stated last month that a tan Nissan Altima veered off of South Main Street in Dobson, hitting two mailboxes at about 8:05 a.m.
An officer on patrol spotted the Altima near the intersection of Main Street and Atkins Street. The officer reported seeing the Altima cross the center lane and jump the curb on its way into the Sheetz parking lot.
Baliles reportedly circled the gas pumps before attempting to park near the entrance. Then the car hit a metal pole at the parking space.
Baliles is set to be in district court on March 28, where he will face charges of DWI, reckless driving with wanton disregard, possession of a schedule IV controlled substance (which includes many prescription drugs), possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a schedule II controlled substance (narcotics like Percocet and Oxycontin up to cocaine and meth).
He is also scheduled to appear in district court on April 6, when he will face charges of failure to maintain lane control, reckless driving to endanger, leaving the scene of property damage, injury to personal property, and texting while operating a motor vehicle.
Baliles was in his first year with Surry County Schools, having been hired in August, according to Sonia Dickerson, district director of communications.
Prior to that, he had worked as an assistant principal in the Martinsville, Virginia, school district from August of 2012 to May of 2015.
Reach Jeff at 415-4692.