Fahey officially welcomed

Published 12:58 pm Thursday, November 19, 2009

AHOSKIE – “It was a dark and stormy night” is a phrase penned by Victorian novelist Edward Bulwer-Lytton at the beginning of his 1830 novel Paul Clifford and a phrase often used in both serious and humorous novels.

Bulwer-Lytton’s full opening reads, “It was a dark and stormy night; the rain fell in torrents, except at occasional intervals, when it was checked by a violent gust of wind which swept up the streets rattling along the housetops…”

It is a phrase that describes Thursday evening.

But neither the dark nor the rain nor the wind was enough to deter residents, community leaders and Hertford County Public Schools personnel from turning out to officially welcome new superintendent, Dr. John A. Fahey and his family – wife, Virginia, and son, Jeff.

The event, a “floating” reception, was sponsored by the Hertford County Board of Education and was open to the public.

Dr. Fahey was named June 29 as the local school district’s new superintendent. He officially began his duties on July 27.

A veteran educator in Virginia, Dr. Fahey, age 59, came to Hertford County from Surry County (VA) Schools where he served as Assistant Superintendent.

In July Dr. Fahey announced, “I plan to build upon what Dr. Basham has achieved up until this point,” and indeed, he has begun that work already tackling three major district challenges – mathematics, social studies and literacy. Despite evidencing growth during the past two years, the district continues to lag well behind the state in many areas including these three. Algebra I and US History scores have long been a concern of the local board.

The board felt that Dr. Fahey’s broad base of experience as a teacher, principal and assistant superintendent made him stand out from other candidates.

In July of this year Board Chair, Attorney Ron Baker, told the local paper, “We sought out a person who was willing to take what we have in place and move us forward…we feel we have found that person in Dr. Fahey.”

By their commitment and bravery in weathering Thursday’s winds and rain, it appears that the citizens, business community and system personnel share that sentiment.