MSCS school board to announce interim superintendent

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Memphis-Shelby County Schools school board will pick an interim superintendent tonight following Dr. Joris Ray’s resignation.

The board is scheduled to announce their pick at 5:30 p.m.

Ray resigned following an investigation into allegations of impropriety with possible current and former district staff.

Deputy Superintendent for Strategic Operations and Finance Dr. John Baker and Deputy Superintendent of Schools and Academic Support Dr. Angela Whitelaw have been co-leading the district.

Why is Dr. Joris Ray leaving Memphis-Shelby County Schools with $480K?

In July, MSCS held an emergency executive session after divorce documents revealed Ray allegedly had extramarital affairs with the employees.

Ray was placed on paid administrative leave while two independent attorneys, former U.S. Attorney Edward Stanton and former MLGW counsel Herman Morris, investigated the allegations against him.

Last week, MSCS accepted Ray’s resignation. He is set to receive a severance package of $480,000, paid in a lump sum.

He will also assist the school board with succession planning for the new superintendent, and can be paid up to a year for his services at an hourly rate.

MORE: Joris Ray could receive more money for services to MSCS outside of severance pay

Following the news of Ray’s resignation, he released the following statement.

“During my tenure as Superintendent, we triumphed during one of the most challenging times in the history of education. The COVID-19 pandemic brought about difficulties that threatened the institution of conventional learning. Yet, with the steadfast support of the community, we catapulted MSCS into the national spotlight as a district breaking barriers inside and outside the classroom. Thank you for believing in my leadership. Thank you for believing in the abilities of our students. Memphis-Shelby County Schools has my heartfelt best wishes. We vowed to restore our District to TVAAS Level 5 status. Despite the daunting odds, we achieved that goal. Our students are now on an ascending path to continuous growth and achievement that cannot be derailed by detractors or distractions. Together, we MUST BELIEVE. Together, we WILL ACHIEVE. Together, we are REIMAGINING 901!”