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Cotton Selected as Superintendent for Chesapeake Public Schools


HENRY COUNTY – Earlier this evening, HCPS superintendent Dr. Jared Cotton was appointed to serve as the next superintendent for Chesapeake Public Schools. It is anticipated that he will begin his tenure in Chesapeake in July 2018.

Dr. Cotton has proudly served as the superintendent for Henry County Public Schools since January 2012. During that time, the school division has experienced many successes, including implementing research-based reading interventions in all elementary schools that has led to an increase in the number of students reading on grade level, implementing the first “New Tech” high school programs in Virginia at Magna Vista High School and Bassett High School to focus on relevant project-based learning experiences and a global studies curriculum, partnering with local colleges to create “career pathways” for students with special emphasis in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), and revising the assessment program in HCPS to include student growth measures to provide more accurate data related to student achievement, with special emphasis on literacy and mathematics.

Cotton’s current contract began on July 1, 2017, and was set to expire June 30, 2021. “It has been my honor and privilege to serve this great school division and community,” stated Cotton. “I am proud of the work we have accomplished together and I know that the high quality staff across the division will continue to inspire hope in students for years to come.”

School Board Chairman Dr. Joseph DeVault said, “Dr. Cotton’s tenure with Henry County has been marked with great progress in our school system. His leadership and ability to inspire those around him - including his staff, building administrators and teachers - has led to many improvements in our school system and led to Henry County Public Schools being recognized around the state and across the nation as an outstanding school system. We are grateful for the years he has given to Henry County and the successes our students have had due to his innovation.”

The School Board will begin the process of selecting a new superintendent as soon as possible.

Additional Highlights from Cotton’s Tenure in HCPS

  • Initiated the HCPS Equity Council to investigate ways to address achievement and “opportunity” gaps for all students

  • Expanded the HCPS award winning 1:1 iPad initiative in order to provide more students with access to cutting-edge technology

  • Worked with stakeholders to revamp the strategic plan in order to focus on college and career readiness skills for students, and identified key measures to monitor the plan’s success

  • Initiated the revision of the curriculum to include college and career readiness skills

  • Initiated several initiatives to increase student safety across the school division (random safety audits, school entry upgrades, and mandatory safety drills for all buildings)

  • Developed the HCPS “Teaching and Learning Framework” in order to increase consistency in instructional practices across the school division

  • Revised the Capital Improvement Plan based on data related to facility needs and initiated collaborative meetings with the Board of Supervisors and the county administration to discuss funding options, which has led to construction of the first new school in Henry County in almost thirty years

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