CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- New West Virginia Schools Superintendent Jim Phares promised this morning to "rebuild communications" and make "tough decisions" to improve education across the state.
At a swearing-in ceremony this morning, Phares officially became West Virginia's 28th state schools superintendent.
"It's a good day for West Virginia, and there are better days ahead," Phares said.
He replaces Jorea Marple, who was abruptly fired in November. State school board critics alleged Marple's firing was politically motivated.
Phares, who will make $165,000 a year, said he already has met with Department of Education staff members and some county superintendents, and plans to meet with teachers and county school board members in the coming days.
"I am optimistic about the future of education in West Virginia and look forward to working with students, parents, educators, administrators, higher education, all branches of government, business and community members to transform our schools," said Phares, former superintendent in Randolph, Marion and Pocahontas counties. "The 21st-century workplace requires up to change how we prepare students to live and work, if we want them to be successful."
Read more in Thursday's Gazette. Reach Eric Eyre at erice...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-4869.