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Crenshaw Board of Education selects interim superintendent

Interim Superintendent Terry Holley has 36 years of experience in education, and 33 of those years were spent nearby in Covington County.  Holley said that the similarities between Covington and Crenshaw eased the transition.

Interim Superintendent Terry Holley has 36 years of experience in education, and 33 of those years were spent nearby in Covington County. Holley said that the similarities between Covington and Crenshaw eased the transition.

The Crenshaw County Board of Education named an interim superintendent Monday morning, but the search will resume next year for a permanent candidate.

Former Covington County Schools official Terry Holley will reprise his role as superintendent on behalf of Crenshaw County, temporarily filling in for former superintendent Randy Wilkes, who recently accepted the superintendent position in Phenix City.

Steve Sanders, member of the Crenshaw County Board of Education, said that Holley’s hiring is a temporary measure.

“We will start that back up after Christmas in the hopes that we can name someone in the spring,” Sanders said.

“You tend to get more people who want to make a move in the springtime, and we hope to bring a superintendent in mid-term.”

Holley has 36 years of experience in education, with 24 of them coming as a principal of elementary, middle and high schools in Covington County system.

He also served as a teacher, a coach and, most recently, as the superintendent of the county for his last four years.

Sanders added that it was his wealth of experience, as well as the similarities between the Crenshaw and Covington school systems, that made Holley a good fit.

“The mix is exactly the same, so he understands what it takes to take care of our children in Crenshaw County,” Sanders added.

“So it was just the perfect mix to bring somebody local—he didn’t have to relocate here.  He’ll drive in from Florala every day.  He knows the type of people he’ll be working with and he understands the superintendent world, and it just worked out perfect—he’s just a true gentleman.”

Holley added that although he doesn’t know many people in the Crenshaw County area, his prior relationship with Wilkes has eased the transition a great deal.

“The systems are very similar with the employees and everything else, so really I feel at home,” Holley said.

“This is an interim situation, and I’m not in it for the long term or anything else with that.  But I still like kids, and that’s what I’ve done all of my life.  And also to help out in any capacity I can to make sure that the transition when the search starts is a smooth situation.  One of my main jobs is to maintain the professionalism that Crenshaw County has and also the school system. The main objective is let’s just get school started and started out smoothly.”

The other priority for Holley is the continuation of Wilkes’ plan to establish a career technical center in Crenshaw County in the coming months.

And although his position with the school system is a temporary one, the goal of preparing the county’s youth for the future is set in stone.

“First of all, we’ve met with LBW, and our plans are to go out into the community next week and we hope to meet with the businesses and partner with them,” Holley added.

“We plan on fulfilling the duties of career tech.  I am an advocate for career tech because college isn’t for everybody.  But certainly, I would love to see three years down the road our students go across the stage and have a year of college behind them, either academically or with career tech.”

The next phase of the plan calls for a pilot program that will be housed at Luverne, featuring multiple businesses, healthcare and welding, though it will be open to all of the county’s students.

Renovations will continue on the board of education building in the spring, where the students aim to transition to that facility upon its completion for the duration of the program.

“Our kids deserve the best, at whatever capacity we have, and jobs in this county are very important,” Holley said.

“Schools and community goes together, so that’s one thing we want to make sure that happens.”