Dr. Hairston steps down as superintendent, takes position in Virginia

Dr. Angela Hairston speaks during a press conference last week.

Dr. Hairston steps down as superintendent, takes position in Virginia
October 21
12:19 2020

WS/FCS Superintendent resigns 13 months after taking position 

After only 13 months at the reins of Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools, Superintendent Dr. Angela Hairston called it quits last week. During a press conference on Friday, Oct. 16, Hairston, who was sworn in just last year, said she has taken the superintendent vacancy with Danville Public Schools (DPS) in Danville, Va.
Following a nationwide search, Hairston was selected from a field of more than 40 candidates vying for the vacancy left by Dr. Beverly Emory, who stepped in early 2019 to take a position with the North Carolina State Board of Education. Hairston is the seventh superintendent in the district and the first African American to hold the position.
When discussing her resignation, Hairston said making the decision to leave was hard, “but one that can’t be passed up.” She said she couldn’t pass up the opportunity to go back home. 

Hairston began her career in education in her hometown as a teacher with DPS, where she went on to serve as an assistant principal and principal before taking her talents to Georgia. In Georgia, she served as director of human resources, a principal and assistance principal for Gwinnett County Public Schools, region superintendent for the DeKalb County School District, and superintendent for Richmond County Schools in Augusta. 

Hairston said, “I have the chance to accept an opportunity dear to my heart within another school district that I cannot pass up. While I am not yet at liberty to discuss all the details, I want the talented staff and amazing students and families of this district to hear this news from me first. I want them to know that working in this community has been a truly rewarding experience and I’ve been grateful for the opportunity.
“I did struggle with that, but knowing that the opportunity was there and it may be short-lived, there was a timeline associated with it so I had to go with my best interest,” Hairston said.
Moving forward, Hairston said the work of educating the next generation of leaders is ongoing and she’s confident that the board will continue moving the district in the right direction.

“We have a strong team … this work is led as a team effort and it’s not a singular person,” continued Hairston. “A good leader builds a great team and we have a great team ,,, so I can tell you that the work is going to continue in a very, very good way.”
Malishai Woodbury, chair of the WS/FCS Board of Education, said the board has already started discussions on appointing an interim superintendent and Dr. Hairston will work with the board to ensure a smooth transition.
“We hope to announce that in the very near future that we have a new superintendent,” said Woodbury. “Once the interim is in place, we will focus on finding the next leader for our district. … We intend to conduct a national search for the best, most qualified candidate. ,,, We do intend to include community stakeholders and engage in events much like we did in 2019.
“We do not intend to rush this process. We want to be deliberate and take our time to find a good pool of diverse and qualified candidates.”

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Tevin Stinson

Tevin Stinson

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