SM South News

SMSD Board Chooses Next Superintendent

Jim Hinson is retiring. Who is his replacement?

The+new+superintendents+typically+come+to+visit+every+school%2C+so+he+will+be+walking+the+halls+of+South+soon.
The new superintendents typically come to visit every school, so he will be walking the halls of South soon.

The new superintendents typically come to visit every school, so he will be walking the halls of South soon.

Ali Harrison

Ali Harrison

The new superintendents typically come to visit every school, so he will be walking the halls of South soon.

Ali Harrison, Reporter

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After Jim Hinson’s resignation as SMSD superintendent was unanimously approved by board members in April, the board began the search for someone to fill his seat, currently taken by Interim Superintendent Kenny Southwick. They received some criteria suggestions from staff, teachers, and parents on what the new superintendent should be like and prioritize:

“The community asked for a leader who possesses the ability to enhance student performance and implement strategies to narrow gaps in student achievement,” said Brad Stratton, president of the Shawnee Mission Board of Education.

After another unanimous vote on February 2, Dr. Michael Fulton was chosen to be the next superintendent, and Stratton believes he “meets every single item listed on the community-generated profile.” His three-year contract shows a base salary of $250,000, $10,000 less than his previous job as the superintendent of Pattonville School District.

Fulton attended Southwest Missouri State University for his bachelor’s degree, Illinois State University for his master’s degree, and Saint Louis University for his doctoral degree in education.

As for experience, Fulton worked for 23 years in the Pattonville School District near St. Louis. For the past 11 of the 23 years, he’s been the superintendent. Before working with Pattonville, he taught middle school, fifth grade, and sixth grade, as well as being an assessment coordinator. In 2016, he won Missouri Superintendent of the Year. Overall, he had a great influence everywhere he’s worked, and the district seems hopeful that he will bring that influence along over to SMSD.

Fulton is known for his great ability to not only represent districts and staff but bring them together as well.

“During Fulton’s time in Pattonville, the district evolved into one of the most diverse school districts in Missouri and the nation. As diversity grew, so did the district’s academic performance. Pattonville received national recognition by engaging students, parents, staff and community members to create learning solutions that improve student academic success, promote responsible citizenship and prepare students for college and career,” according to a statement released by SMSD.

Fulton will begin the job on July 1, just before the start of 2018-2019 school year. Hopefully, he will bring his positivity to SMSD and continue the district and its schools on a path to success.

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SMSD Board Chooses Next Superintendent