Four principals get new jobs for new year|[06/13/07]

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Four changes in top Vicksburg Warren School District posts are being made, including a swap of principals between two schools.

Charlie Tolliver, principal of Vicksburg High, will go to Grove Street, where there are special programs, and Derrick Reed will leave Grove Street for Vicksburg High.

&#8220I’m ready for the challenge,” said Reed, who has been with the district nearly 10 years.

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Also, Redwood Elementary principal Morgan Gates will move to Dana Road Elementary, while Vicksburg Intermediate principal Charles &#8220Bubba” Hanks will move to Redwood Elementary.

An educator for more than 30 years and an area resident for almost 40, Hanks said he’s excited to return to Redwood. But, &#8220there’s a lot of work to be done.” He said the hardest part is trying to divide his time between the two schools, but that he’s looking forward to getting moved in and meeting everyone.

&#8220I’m very familiar with the community. I’ve lived in Redwood for 39 years,” said Hanks.

Hanks actually attended Redwood through his junior year, before being a member of the first class to graduate from Warren Central. He would later return to serve as assistant principal for 10 years before moving to Vicksburg Intermediate.

The vacant spot at Vicksburg Intermediate will be filled, Superintendent Dr. James Price said, but a replacement has not yet been named.

Part of the reason for the changes, explained Price, is to expand a program at Grove Street to allow students the opportunity to participate in vocational programs and on-the-job training.

Grove Street is the base for alternative programs and serves K-12 and GED students that may have behavior or academic challenges or other special circumstances. Students can be referred to the school by parents, principals or the district discipline committee. The program has been in operation in various locations in Warren County for more than 10 years.

&#8220Mr. Tolliver has a vocational background and certification that will allow us to take our Grove program to new areas that will directly benefit the students and the community,” Price said.

The decision to switch administrators at the high school level was not made lightly, said Price. High school principals often have 80-hour weeks, supervising events and traveling around the state with sports teams and bands.

&#8220The demands placed on the principal of a major high school today are truly phenomenal,” said Price.

The administrative changes will take effect July 1. Students return for the first day of the 2007-2008 school year on Aug. 8.

This year’s shift is a sharp contrast to last year when the retirement of three principals created a domino effect, leading to 15 personnel changes in the 9,200-student district.