SCS Hires Interim Superintendent Joris Ray Permanently

In a unanimous board vote, Shelby County Schools has voted to hire Joris Ray, the current interim superintendent, to take over the post permanently.

“It’s clear that there is a tremendous amount of support and I have the utmost confidence that Dr. Ray can serve in his role for all of the students of Shelby County, no matter whether they are in SCS, charter or ASD,” -Board member Michelle Robinson McKissack

Read more about the incoming superintendent at the Commercial Appeal.

Report: Over Half of SCS High School Students Not Ready for College

New data is out from a report highlighting the college readiness of Shelby County Schools High schools students and the results are grim.

According to the report, nearly 6 out of 10 SCS high school students require remedial math classes before college, with that number being 4 in 10 for remedial reading classes.

Educator Marlena Little notes that this is a major problem: “Students who do take remedial courses actually do not mostly finish. You have about between a 20 and 50 percent of students who actually take remedial courses do not finish and complete their degree.”

Read more about the report here.

Dorsey Hopson Stepping Down as Superintendent of Shelby County Schools

Dorsey Hopson has announced he will be leaving the post of Superintendent, effective January 8th. He will be moving to a national position with health insurance company Cigna, and called it a “difficult” decision to make the change. In his new role, Hopson will help Cigna “expand its services to school districts for health benefits and wellness programs.”

Via Chalkbeat:

His hiring came on the cusp of massive change in Memphis’ educational landscape. The district’s student enrollment steadily declined after six suburban towns split off from Shelby County Schools in 2014 to create their own districts, and the state-run Achievement School District continued to siphon off students by taking over chronically low-performing schools in the city. Hopson and the school board eventually closed nearly two dozen schools to shore up resulting budget deficits.

In a press conference, Hopson said “I would love to see this work to this work to the finish line,” he said. “But I feel confident that we have laid a strong foundation for the next leader of Shelby County Schools.” No word yet on a timeline for a new superintendent.