Overlea High principal named to head Milford Mill Academy


Milford Mill Academy, which has struggled with instability and infighting since Principal P. Delores Mbah was removed from her post in May -- after an audit traced school money and equipment to her home -- is changing principals again.

Vashti C. Goldstein, principal for the past year, will be replaced July 1 by Norman S. Smith Jr., principal of Overlea High School.

School officials have not picked a new post for Goldstein. James F. Thanner, assistant principal at Catonsville High, will become Overlea's principal.

Goldstein, who presided over a divided staff -- some of whom were loyal to Mbah and angry at the move to fire her -- asked for the transfer, school spokesman Donald I. Mohler said at a school board meeting last night, where the transfer was approved.

"It was for personal reasons," said Patsy Holmes, northwest area superintendent.

Last week, a spate of fights among rival neighborhood groups prompted police to monitor dismissals each afternoon at the Randallstown-area school, though the teens involved are from various schools.

One of those fights erupted in gunfire a week ago Monday in a residential neighborhood off Liberty Road and four teen-agers -- two from Milford -- were charged with attempted murder, among other offenses.

But Holmes played down the incidents. "Fighting at Milford isn't different from fighting at Dulaney High," she said. "It's just got the media's attention."

Mbah has appealed Superintendent Anthony G. Marchione's recommendation to fire her and awaits an appeal hearing before the board.

In other business, the school board approved a $816,400 fee to Whiting-Turner Contracting Co. for construction management services on an addition for Franklin Middle School.

Pub Date: 4/16/97

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