Forward movement begins

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 29, 2006

R-C News-Herald Editorial

The process has begun.

No matter how painful the last few months have been as the Hertford County Public Schools went through the non-renewal of a superintendent’s contract, a yearlong vacancy at assistant superintendent and the loss of an executive director, the process of healing is now starting.

Dr. Mary Jo Allen has hit the ground running in her role as Interim Superintendent of the district. She has recognized her role as a stabilizing force and is spending her time trying to improve what already exists in Hertford County.

Monday night, the Hertford County Board of Education took three important steps.

The first was laying out a plan to choose the district’s new leader. If all goes according to the plan, which is never a guarantee, a new superintendent will be in place by January 1.

As part of that process, the board rightly gave an entire six weeks for the application process. They also agreed to listen to staff and community input as they make their plans.

Another important plank in the board’s plans for improvement came when they installed Dr. Brenda Tinkham as Interim Assistant Superintendent for Educational Program Services. A career educator, Dr. Tinkham has served the district as a teacher, assistant principal, principal, director and is now moving to the district’s second highest-ranking position.

She has and will continue to serve the best interests of the children of Hertford County. Her elevation to help the district through this difficult time was a wise and insightful move.

Also, the Board moved to fill the vacant position of Executive Director for Human Resources. According to Dr. Allen, Betty Pugh has been working hard in the interim role for that position.

Pugh is a smart educator who will give her best to the position. She will work hard in a job that is thankless and difficult. Pugh is a wise choice to serve the district and will do an excellent job.

The process that has begun can lead to Hertford County’s Public Schools getting where they need to be. It is a process, but it is one that can be accomplished.