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Seal wins Hancock seat

Jennifer Seal won the Hancock County School Board District Four seat Tuesday by scoring a convincing victory over incumbent Peggy-Haas Ladner and former Hancock High School football coach Rocky Gaudin.

Seal, 36, is a mathematics instructor at Pearl River Community College. She taught a number of years at Hancock High School, where she was awarded Teacher of the Year honors a few years back. Her and her husband own Seal’s MarketPlace on Hwy. 43.

Unofficial results show Seal collecting 662 votes which is 56.8 percent of the 1166 votes to overthrow Haas-Ladner who finished with 354 votes or 30.36 percent. Gaudin finished with 149 votes which is 12.8 percent.

The school board has tackled several tough issues since Hurricane Katrina. Currently, hundreds of students are attending classes in portable classrooms. Transportation has been difficult because of a lack of bus drivers, and the school district is hoping to build two new schools.

Seal said she was elated with her victory and she said she wants to address issues related to transportation, test performance, rebuilding, and uniforms.

“The children are the real winners here,” she said. “My election is a great honor and I deeply appreciate the confidence and trust the voters have shown in me. No matter how the people voted, each and every person will be fully represented. I sincerely hope everyone will join me as we work to make a difference for the children, parents, and staff of all Hancock County Schools.”

In the District Three race, incumbent Board President Morgan Ladner was the winner in a tight race against challenger Billy Thomas.

Ladner collected 754 votes to Thomas’s 667.