School board announces division’s next Superintendent

ANNETTE BENNETT

Curriculum and instruction director to start new role, replace Dr. Grasty on July 1, 2018.

  • By Liz Ramos
    eramos@newsadvance.com

APPOMATTOX COUNTY

APPOMATTOX — The Appomattox County School Board announced Director of Curriculum and Instruction Annette Bennett as the division’s new superintendent at Thursday night’s board meeting.

SCHOOL BOARD 2018

(School Board 2018)

“I am thrilled, excited. It’s a huge honor. It’s even a bigger responsibility. I am very appreciative that the board had confidence in me and has given me this opportunity,” Bennett said.

Bennett will take the helm of the division July 1 and replaces Superintendent Dorinda Grasty, who is retiring after 30 years with the division as a teacher and administrator. Grasty served as superintendent for nine years.

Bennett started in Appomattox County Public Schools in 1991 and has served as the director of curriculum and instruction since 2008.

“The strengths Dr. Bennett brings to the office of superintendent include a wide variety of roles and experiences she has held in [kindergarten through 12th grade] and a 27 yearlong commitment to our schools, our community and our youth,” a news release from Appomattox County Public Schools reads. At Thursday’s meeting, to help the “excellent school division” improve, Bennett said she wants to focus on the new profile of a Virginia graduate as well as engagement of parents and the community.

“I think we can be a model in Virginia for all rural schools. We already are a model for Region 8 and Region 2000 in our accreditation standards, and I think we can be a model for the whole state,” Bennett said. As superintendent, Bennett said she’s excited to look at “a bigger picture,” including all of the schools’ programs and activities instead of solely curriculum and instruction.

In 1985, Bennett began her career in Campbell County as a special education teacher. She has been an assistant principal, director of remedial and special education, principal and director of curriculum and instruction.

Bennett said her experience will help her lead the division.

“I know this division inside and out. I know it better than anyone. I’ve been here 27 years. I know the strengths and weaknesses. I know the people. They know me. I think that’s really going to be key in being able to hit the ground running,” Bennett said.

 

She received a bachelor of science degree in special education from James Madison University in 1985 and a master’s degree of education in administration and supervision from Lynchburg College in 1989. In 2017, she received her doctorate in educational leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University.

In other news:

The school board unanimously voted to give a 3 percent pay increase to all ACPS employees.

Liz Ramos covers K-12 education for The News &Advance. Reach her at (434) 385-5532.

 

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