Issues New Superintendents Face

With students across Southcentral Kentucky out of school for summer vacation, many in the school district are still hard at work.

In the Russellville Independent School District the superintendent has been on the job for eight months and is working to fill around 30 positions in the school system.

He says: "The Board of Education wanted to make some changes in the district and they chose me to make those changes."

Cook says he's working to improve the district's test scores. He says right now the district is doing well, but he's aiming a little higher. He says: "I think it could be a great one. A lot of times an enemy of being a great is being good."

Cook says he's pushing performance based education. He wants to offer the high school students an opportunity to "clep out" of classes that they are proficient in, so they can focus on those that are more of a challenge.

He says: "I think the biggest problem we have in America today is we don't have high expectations for our kids and we don't challenge them enough."

Part of the transition for cook includes personnel changes. He says he's looking to fill around 30 vacancies including a principal for both the middle and high schools. He says: "Some of it has been voluntary, they've gone on to other jobs or changed positions and some of it hasn't been voluntary."

Cook says he wants his students, teachers, and principals to have a personal relationship. He says: "You can't make a difference in the life of a child unless you know a child."

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