By John L. Ross
TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY
KNOX COUNTY —
With Wednesday being the official “last day” of current Knox County School Superintendent Walter Hulett, students, teachers and the community may have been wondering who was going to step into his position.
They won’t wonder anymore.
During a special-called meeting of the Knox County Board of Education Saturday, Ralph Hoskins was named interim superintendent of schools, according to a press release on the school’s website.
According to the release, “The Board of Education met in executive session for two hours on Saturday to interview potential candidates for the position.
“After returning to regular session, (Board member) Dexter Smith made the motion and (Board member) Charles Merida seconded to hire Hoskins as interim.”
Hoskins retired from superintendent of Jackson County schools in 2010. “It is an honor for me to lead Knox County and work in this school district,” Hoskins said after the announcement.
During the regular monthly meeting April 23, four days before the decision, no word came about plans for hiring a new superintendent. The board did meet in executive session for 15 minutes during that meeting, but after it was over Hulett announced no final action had been taken during the closed session.
An agenda for Saturday’s noon meeting was posted on the district’s website. It appears the post was made Thursday.
The length of Hoskins’ contract with Knox County is dependent on the search for a permanent replacement, with the contract valid up to six months, according to the press release. The Board voted Saturday to use the Kentucky School Boards Association to conduct the superintendent search.
KSBA consultants will begin working with the Board immediately to develop criteria, advertise the position, and organize a screening committee.
The Board has not set a date to have a new superintendent in place.
Hoskins’ career in public education began in Bell County in 1976, where he served as a special education teacher during the spring semester.
In the fall of 1976, he moved to Clay County, where he advanced his career through the ranks of teacher to assistant principal and principal.
In 1995, he took the position of Special Education Director for the Berea Independent school district, where he later served as interim superintendent in 1997. Hoskins’ final stint in education was that of superintendent of the Jackson County from fall 1997 through his retirement.
While in Jackson County, Hoskins made significant improvements to the district’s facilities, including athletic fields, elementary renovations, and new career and adult education centers, according to the release.
With geothermal projects planned in Knox County this summer, Hoskins looks forward to working with district leaders to successfully complete projects before the start of the 2013-2014 school year.
“There are many challenges ahead, and we will work together to do what is best for the students of Knox County,” he said.
Hoskins met with Hulett and the district’s leadership team Monday. He begins duties as interim superintendent on Wednesday.
“We feel that Mr. Hoskins will be an asset to our district during this transition in leadership,” said Smith. “We look forward to him leading our district while the search for a superintendent takes place.”