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More than 300 Oklahoma public school superintendents have resigned since 2006

A look at the number of Oklahoma school superintendents who resigned, retired or have been terminated since 2006.
by Andrew Knittle Published: October 1, 2012
/articleid/3714386/1/pictures/1845924">Photo - Derald Glover Fort Gibson Public Schools superintendent
Derald Glover Fort Gibson Public Schools superintendent

“I think that's why you're seeing more and more people get out this profession and fewer and fewer getting in.”

Barresi's reforms focus on changing the way students are taught, restructuring the state Education Department and reforming schools.

Next month, schools will be given letter grades — A through F — based on their performance, school officials announced earlier in the week.

The letter grades will be based on a variety of factors, including test scores, student demographics and attendance.

“We're not against those reforms, most of them,” he said. “Most of them are good reforms, ... they're just being tossed out a bit haphazardly without a lot of thought on how to, realistically, implement them.”

Barresi, who expected pushback on her reforms from the outset, stands behind her long-term vision for the state public education system.

“We believe the reforms enacted over the past several years are having a positive effect on the state,” Barresi said.

Some districts hit hard

While dozens of Oklahoma school districts have had to deal with replacing their superintendents since 2006, some districts have been busier than others.

Varnum Public Schools, a small district in Seminole County, replaced its superintendent every year between 2006 and 2011. Last year, the district had two superintendents resign in the same year, records show.

In McCurtain County, tiny Watson Public Schools has replaced its superintendent five times since 2006, including three times in 2010. In Holdenville, the district's top administrator has been replaced six times, including three times in 2011 and twice in 2008.

Not just rural schools

And superintendents aren't just fleeing small, rural school districts.

The state's largest school district, Oklahoma City Public Schools, has replaced its superintendent four times since 2006, including twice in 2008.

“I think in any industry, in any profession, people want to be valued,” Glover said. “And at this point, our state is not valuing the good things education is doing. It doesn't matter what size your district is. I think you're seeing that with this exodus.”


Carrie Coppernoll

Staff Writer

by Andrew Knittle
Investigative Reporter
Andrew Knittle has covered state water issues, tribal concerns and major criminal proceedings during his career as an Oklahoma journalist. He has won reporting awards from the state's Associated Press bureau and prides himself on finding a real...
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