WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The state’s largest school district officially has a new leader.
Back in February, Dr. Alicia Thompson was announced as USD 259’s new superintendent, replacing outgoing superintendent John Allison.
That change was effective July 1.
The first USD 259 Board of Education meeting for Dr. Thompson as the districts new leader was held Monday night.
Many community members turned out for the meeting to congratulate Thompson on her new job.
“This has been a road that she has been working for and with that said we know that you are going to do a good job,” said Emile McGill, President of Delta Sigma Theta Inc. Wichita Alumni Chapter.
Other people who stood up at the podium offered well wishes.
“Her dedication to education and serving the community at large will make her an outstanding superintendent for our district,” said Larry Burks Sr., President of the NAACP Wichita Branch.
Dr. Thompson didn’t waste any time outlining some of her goals for the upcoming school year.
“We are really going to work on teaching a little bit differently so that our kids have the opportunity so that our kids have the opportunity to be problem solvers, to be more analytical thinking and be able to be creative in the ways that they display their learning,” said Dr. Thompson.
She also spoke about the challenge the district needs to tackle, revolving around the social and emotional character of the students.
“We know a student can be as smart as they can be, but once they go into the workforce, they really need to be able to have skills that will be able to help them collaborate and work well with others,” said Dr. Thompson.
Dr. Thompson said she and the board will also be seeking the communities input as well.
She says they plan to engage in listening sessions.
“I think it is very critical for me to be out internally and externally listening to the people in the field and in our community about what you all want to see this district to become,” said Dr. Thompson.
Dr. Thompson says those listening sessions should kick off sometime in October.