Three principals slated for Troy City Schools

Published 11:11 pm Thursday, June 10, 2010

In a special session Thursday, the Troy City Schools Board of Education approved the hiring of three new principals.

The votes for the elementary, middle and high school positions were each identical — Three in favor, two opposed.

In each motion it was Judson Edwards and Wally Lowrey, the two newest school board members, who raised their hands to the words, “all opposed.”

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But the votes of Dorothea Thomas, John Parker and Board President Roxie Kitchens were enough to uphold Superintendent Linda Felton-Smith’s recommendations.

Effective July 1, Juan Henderson will be the new principal at Troy Elementary School; Bradley Bouldin will head affairs at Charles Henderson Middle School; and Kathy Murphy will be the administrative leader of Charles Henderson High School.

“I believe we have very capable administrators who will be joining us for the 2010-2011 school year,” Felton-Smith said.

The superintendent introduced Murphy, who was the only one of the school systems newest administrators present at the meeting.

“Thank you so much,” Murphy said to the board.

“I appreciate the opportunity.”

Murphy comes to Troy after spending two years in the central office of Butler County, following a 15-year stint as principal at Greenville High and Middle Schools.

Murphy said she is anxious to get back on the front lines of education.

“I have truly missed the principalship,” she said.

“I think the unique part of the principalship is the hands on; the opportunity to work with the students.”

Murphy’s own extensive education includes two masters’ degrees, a doctorate and a bachelor’s degree from Troy State University, where she said she was friends and classmates with now outgoing CHHS Principal, David Helms.

“I’ve loved Troy from the time I came here in undergraduate school,” she said.

“I’m glad to be a part of Troy City Schools. I’m looking forward to being part of this community and learning and growing with the faculty and staff at Charles Henderson High School.”

After the board meeting Felton-Smith called to congratulate Henderson and Bouldin, telling each of them they earned their respective positions by a 3-2 vote.

It took a long distance call to Las Vegas to deliver the good news to one of Troy’s own.

“I’m just out of breath right now,” Henderson said.

“I’m really excited to get back home.”

Henderson grew up in Troy and is a graduate of CHHS. He is now returning to TES where he began his teaching career.

“Troy’s the place I started my career. Now I have the opportunity to come back to the same area and raise my kids and work with some of the people I’ve worked with before.”

And Henderson said he has a great deal of respect for those he’ll follow.

“Mr. (Hank) Jones, Mr. (Willie) Thomas and Mr. (Geoffrey) Spann were all mentors who got me on track,” he said.

“Those are big shoes to fill.”

After netting seven years as an administrator at TES, Henderson took his experience west to Nevada. There he furthered his practice as an educational leader at the elementary level and was a head principal at the first charter school in North Las Vegas.

Back in the south, Bouldin is poised to take over the reins at CHMS.

“I’m really excited,” Bouldin said.

“Troy City is a really progressive school system.”

Like his prospective colleagues, Bouldin has spent significant time in administrative positions.

Currently a Curriculum and Assessment Specialist for STI Achievement Services, he has spent 13 years as a principal or assistant principal in west-central Alabama.

Bouldin said he is anxious to start at CHHS where he may have some momentum to work with.

“The middle school has done a good job bringing up test scores,” he said.

“They have a lot of positive things going on in the school system, and they really seem to be headed in the right direction.”

Felton-Smith said she is hoping to schedule a community meet and greet for the new administrators and looks forward to announcing those plans soon.

Neither Edwards or Lowery could be reached for comment regarding their voting decisions Thursday night.