• 73°

Commissioners welcome new superintendent

JACKSON – Welcome aboard.

The simple message was conveyed to Northampton County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kathi Gibson here last week.

The Northampton County Commissioners and County Manager Wayne Jenkins formally welcomed the newly hired superintendent to the county as part of their regular monthly meeting.

&uot;Its a real pleasure for me to say hello and get to know you,&uot; Dr. Gibson said. &uot;I ask for your support and ask you to rally around us.&uot;

The superintendent said Northampton County Schools were setting bold goals and it would take the support of everyone for them to be successful.

&uot;I don’t want to be a superintendent that comes just to ask for money,&uot; Dr. Gibson insisted. &uot;I ask you individually and collectively to be involved in the schools.&uot;

Commission Chairwoman Virginia D. Spruill said she wanted Dr. Gibson to feel welcomed.

&uot;We welcome you,&uot; Spruill said. &uot;It’s important for the board of county commissioners, the board of education and yourself to continue to work together.&uot;

Commissioner James Hester asked Gibson if all the district’s teaching positions were filled. She said all but three were currently filled and they were working to take care of those.

Commissioner James Boone said he had concerns about the follow-up for students who graduated from the county school system.

&uot;I don’t think there is a lot of follow-up for kids who graduate, much less those who drop out,&uot; Boone said. &uot;That is a real concern of mine.&uot;

Boone said he wanted to see students be successful after they graduate and added he wasn’t putting the burden on Gibson, but wanted to make her aware of his concerns.

Dr. Gibson said it was going to take time to get the district where everyone wanted to see it, but added she knew the system could do a better job of counseling and showing children what they could become.

In other business, the Board:

* approved Jenkins, Finance Officer Dot Vick and Board Clerk Kay Flythe as the three people who could authorize payment for the Community Development Block Grant program;

* agreed to authorize &uot;No Wake Buoys&uot; in a cove on Lake Gaston;

* authorized a letter to the legislative delegation requesting the appointment of Social Services Director Dr. Al Wentzy to a state commission on the elimination of Medicaid funding by counties; and

* reappointed Commissioner Fannie Greene to the local Smart Start Board.