SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. - Shelby County Schools Vice Chair Stephanie Love will present a resolution to suspend the national search and begin the process of hiring Dr. Joris Ray as the permanent superintendent.
Dr. Ray took over the district as the interim leader in December when former SCS superintendent Dorsey Hopson resigned.
During a committee meeting on Monday, Love said Ray’s track record over those few months is the reason why she’s ready to give him the job permanently.
“I will say as a parent first because my obligation first is to my children, the plan that [Dr. Ray] has put in place, the discussions they’re having is the right discussion and he has the right people in place as it relates to academics to do the job that needs to be done,” said Love.
She plans to present the resolution at the next regular meeting. That meeting should take place near the end of April.
- Dr. Joris Ray officially announced as interim SCS superintendent
- New SCS interim superintendent discusses plan to take district to next level
Currently, Ray is under contract for the next 18 months or until district hires a new leader.
But members of community group Memphis Lift want a national search.
“We deserve the best and we shouldn’t have to keep begging for the best,” said Sarah Carpenter with Memphis Lift.
Carpenter said a national search is the only way to find the best leader for the district.
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“The community has the chance to ask questions of those candidates and if it’s Dr. Ray at the end of it - fine. But we need to open up the doors not only for people in Memphis but all over the country,” said Carpenter.
But Love said the community has shared its feedback about Ray’s performance.
“Over 90 percent, maybe 95 percent of the conversations that I’ve had or the emails or the inboxes or the text messages or the Facebook posts have been geared toward me all of them are saying they want Dr. Ray to continue as our permanent superintendent,” Love said.
If the school board plans to move forward with a national search, the committee's recommendation is to hire Ray and Associates Inc., based in Cedar Rapis, IA.
This is the same firm who assited with the Memphis City School district when the board hired Kriner Cash.
The initial estimate for a national search would be $44,000.
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