Clayton County Schools’ new superintendent lists safety as top priority in new role
ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - Clayton County’s new superintendent is laying out his game plan for improving the school experience for students in his district.
Dr. Anthony Smith says a great education is always a top priority, but students can’t learn if they aren’t safe, so he’s taking a tough-love approach to make sure there’s no ”funny business” in the classroom.
While Dr. Anthony Smith has been working for Clayton County Public Schools in some capacity for over 30 years, he’s only officially been the superintendent for a few months. Dr. Smith is hitting the ground running and laying out his priorities to his executive cabinet Tuesday morning with a breakfast that included Atlanta News First.
Dr. Smith listed cultivating a safety culture, increasing academic achievement, maintaining financial stability and sustainability, strengthening organizational structure, and enhancing infrastructure and new facilities as his school year priorities.
Some specific plans include updating elementary schools that are, on average, 50+ years old, building four new early learning centers, having anti-violence forums with students and parents, and helping students find what their future holds, whether that’s higher education or a job with a local corporation like Delta Air Lines.
“There’s some synergy in Clayton County like I’ve never seen before of everyone connecting and getting behind the mission like I’ve never seen before. We know that public education drives a community. And if we struggle, our community is going to struggle,” said Dr. Smith.
Dr. Smith acknowledges all of these plans are going to take time to fully come to fruition and will need support from everyone in the community - from parents to law enforcement.
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