Madison superintendent going to state; openings also in Jessamine, Clark, Garrard

The announcement that Tommy Floyd is leaving the Madison County Public Schools means that at least four Central Kentucky school districts will now be looking for new superintendents.

Floyd is stepping down as Madison superintendent effective July 1 to assume the newly created position of chief of staff in the Kentucky Department of Education. In essence, he will be the department's second-ranking official, reporting directly to state Education Commissioner Terry Holliday.

Floyd has headed Madison County schools since 2008.

The Jessamine County school district also is in the hunt for a new chief, after last month's announcement that Jessamine Superintendent Lu Young is leaving to become chief academic officer of Fayette County Schools.

Clark County School Superintendent Elaine Farris and Garrard County School Superintendent Donald Aldridge both announced in January that they plan to retire as of July 1.

Floyd said Tuesday that he is looking forward to taking over his new duties in Frankfort. But he admitted that leaving Madison County won't be easy.

"I'm having to take that step of letting go, which is quite difficult when you do what I do for a living," he said. "I've fallen in love with a whole lot of people here who are very special to me and will be for the rest of my life. This is a very connected community."

Over the years, Floyd has held almost every educational post, including teacher, coach, principal and superintendent. He previously worked in the Wayne County, Montgomery County and Somerset Independent school districts, and he spent a year as a highly skilled educator in the state Education Department.

He joined Madison County Schools as chief academic officer in 2006, served briefly as interim superintendent, and was named permanent Madison superintendent in early 2008.

In his new post with the state Education Department, Floyd will have myriad responsibilities, including communications between Holliday and associate commissioners; being a contact for public school superintendents around Kentucky; representing the department in legislative meetings when Holliday isn't available; and working with outside education groups, such as the Kentucky Association of School Superintendents, the Kentucky Association of School Administrators and the Kentucky School Boards Association.

Holliday said in a statement that the new position is needed because of the many initiatives the Education Department now has under way.

Floyd holds bachelor's and master's degrees in biology education from Georgetown College, and he is scheduled to receive a doctorate in educational leadership from Northern Kentucky University later this month.

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