Superintendent to-be feels at home for a reason

Longtime district educator prepares to take supervisor's job
2011-11-29T06:00:00Z Superintendent to-be feels at home for a reasonBy Scott Bandle stltoday.com
November 29, 2011 6:00 am  • 

When Ron Tucker moves his belongings into the Bayless School District's superintendent's office, he won't have far to go.

Tucker is the district's assistant superintendent. He recently was chosen by the board of education as the new superintendent, starting July 1, 2012.

He will replace Superintendent Maureen Clancy-May, who is retiring after eight years on the job.

"I'm very excited," he said. "I'm looking forward to it."

Tucker, 45, is a familiar face in the Bayless district. He has served 12 of his 18 years as an educator in the district. His jobs have included time as the high school and junior high principal.

He recently talked about his new job, and the challenges of running the school district.

QUESTION: Did you have any hesitation applying for the superintendent's job?

ANSWER: It just made a lot of sense. I've been in the district for 12 years and I've worked in many positions. I've got some big shoes to fill. (Maureen Clancy-May) has done an outstanding job in the district.

Q: Do you have any special plans for the district when you take over?

A: Academically, our schools have received the Performance of Distinction by the state from 2009 to 2011. We've taken 14 out of 14 categories. I also want our kids to be smart and be good. We emphasize character education for our students, so they're moral and involved in their community.

Q: How is the physical condition of the district's facilities?

A: We do need to do some work on our buildings. The district schools need more classroom space. Our high school and junior high school libraries need to be expanded. We've made good progress on our soccer field and track.

Q: Would you like to see the Bayless district have a football program?

A: Yes. I wish we had football, but you're talking to an old football coach. I don't see it happening. One of the urban legends is that Bayless had football. We've never had football.

Q: What is unique about the Bayless School District?

A: We're the most culturally diverse district in the state. There are 19 different languages spoken here. We have a lot of Bosnian students. The kids get along really well, though. We've done well academically partly because many of the students' parents are immigrants, who have pushed their children to learn. Our parents are great.

Q: Can the different languages be an issue?

A: Not really. It makes it interesting. In each classroom, we emphasize the importance of reading, writing, speaking and listening. We help students with any language problems.

Q: For the next few months, will you learn more about the superintendent's job?

A: I've been working with Superintendent Clancy-May all of this time. I'll continue to work with her up into the end.

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