Bluefield State provost denies allegations in vote

BLUEFIELD (AP) — Bluefield State College’s provost says a no-confidence vote by faculty is based on false claims.

The Faculty Senate voted 32-18 in mid-April on the no-confidence measure. A letter accompanying the vote said that Provost Lewis Jones threatened to fire faculty without cause and unlawfully upended the school’s core academic structure, among other “coercive” actions.

Provost Lewis Jones tells The Charleston Gazette the allegations aren’t true and he’s challenged faculty members to specify instances of coercion.

Jones says he doesn’t apologize for upholding high standards. He says he won’t compromise academic integrity and effective teaching for political expediency or personal popularity.

Interim college president Tom Blevins has the power to act on the vote, including reprimanding or firing Jones. But Blevins has yet to comment on the vote.

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