Bridge over troubled waters
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Hoping to build trust and help smooth out issues, Interim Superintendent sees himself as a transition person
The McCreary County School District’s Interim Superintendent, Larry Hammond, hit the ground running when he arrived for work on Friday (February 24, 2023).
Hammond, with 43 years of experience in education, is from Rockcastle County where he served for 34 years in a variety of roles as an educator. After serving in Rockcastle County as a teacher and in a variety of administrative positions, Hammond eventually took the helm for 17 years as superintendent in Rockcastle County, retiring there in 2012. After retiring, Hammond went to work for three years in the Breathitt County School System as a Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) state manager in conjunction with KDE’s take over and management of that school system. Hammond then moved on to become interim superintendent of the Glasgow Independent School System in Barren County. After a full-time superintendent was hired in Glasgow, Hammond was chosen as interim superintendent in Gallatin County and was later chosen to serve as full superintendent until the District felt comfortable transitioning to another superintendent. Hammond served for five years in Gallatin County, and during that time, also served for one year as a school board member in his home county of Rockcastle.
“The Gallatin County Board of Education knew when I filed and was elected to the Rockcastle School Board,” Hammond noted. “I have no regrets about serving as a school board member, and I’m proud of some of the things we were able to accomplish during that time.”
When Glasgow Independent once again needed an interim superintendent, they requested Hammond’s return. Hammond returned to Glasgow, serving as interim until a new superintendent was selected. He was then asked to stay on as an adviser to Glasgow Independent’s new superintendent. Hammond was hired as interim superintendent by the McCreary County Board of Education on Wednesday night (February 22), completed his last day as Glasgow Independent’s Superintendent Adviser on Thursday, and spent a busy first day in McCreary County on Friday.
“It was a good first day,” Superintendent Hammond remarked. “Very busy!”
As the McCreary County School District’s Interim Superintendent, Hammond sees himself as a transition person, particularly with the current situation in McCreary County.
“Right now is the perfect time for school boards to search for superintendents,” Hammond noted. “This is the best time of year to attract candidates who want to change jobs. This is the time of year to attract the most candidates, and it also allows more time to check out candidates and their backgrounds.”
Although Hammond hasn’t yet had the opportunity to pinpoint when the Board plans to begin their process of searching for a new superintendent, he is optimistic he can help bridge the gap in McCreary County.
“I look forward to being of assistance and helping smooth out issues,” Hammond observed. “That will help us narrow our focus to the students.”
Hammond is married and has three children. His mother was a teacher, and his wife has taught for twenty years. Additionally, Hammond has twin grandsons.
“I seem to make a hobby out of working,” Hammond said with a laugh. “I am a product of public education, and I definitely see perfecting public education as a challenge.”
Hammond is optimistic about the future.
“I’m thankful to be in McCreary County as the interim superintendent,” Hammond said. “Hopefully, we can trust each other and treat each other with respect and a little bit of brotherly love. I’m thankful for the opportunity.”