Fayette school board chairman John Price’s absences related to his battle with leukemia

John Price, Fayette County Board of Education Chairman
John Price, Fayette County Board of Education Chairman Herald-Leader

Fayette County school board chairman John Price’s absence from meetings since November is related to his ongoing battle with leukemia, district spokeswoman Lisa Deffendall said Tuesday.

The statement was the first time since November that district officials had commented on Price’s absences.

“His immune system remains compromised and he developed an infection which required hospitalization to identify and develop a regimen to fight,” said Deffendall.

Price was in the hospital for 36 days in November and December and is continuing to receive treatment at the University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital, she said.

“He has remained in touch with district leaders, receiving updates and weighing in on board matters with the superintendent,” Deffendall said. “We are grateful for John’s continuing service to our students, staff and community and look forward to him being able to return to public meetings.”

In his absence, board vice chairman Melissa Bacon has been presiding.

Although he has had leukemia, Price attended school board planning meetings and every monthly action meeting from August 25, 2014, until October 26, 2015, with the exception of the April 2015 meeting when he was on vacation. The board also has periodic special meetings, which Price had attended through October, and he had served on district committees.

Price was first appointed to the school board in 2003 and was elected the year after that. His current term is over at the end of 2016, according to the district website.

Valarie Honeycutt Spears: 859-231-3409, @vhspears