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2 Mississippi school districts have new superintendents

July 5, 2021 GMT

OXFORD, Miss. (AP) — Two north Mississippi school districts have new leaders who took over the jobs with the start of July.

Bradley Roberson took the helm of the Oxford School District, while Jay Foster became the Lafayette County School District’s latest superintendent, according to the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal.

Roberson, a 42-year-old Ripley native, is a 19-year employee of the Oxford School District who has worked as a teacher, coach and assistant superintendent for the last three years. He was Oxford’s head baseball coach for five seasons, associate athletic director and assistant principal at the middle and high school level.

He briefly left the school district for two years, working as Senatobia High School’s principal during the 2013-14 and 2014-15 school years before returning to the Oxford School District.

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Roberson told the newspaper that he hopes to reach a point where Oxford’s stakeholders think of the district as a “school community” rather than a “school system.”

“If we are going to do what’s best for all of our kids, then we don’t need to be a school system,” Roberson said. “We need to transition into a school community. Any school system is only as strong as its community, but any community is only as strong as its school system. And I truly believe that statement.”

He took over from Brian Harvey, who served as the school district superintendent for nine years.

Foster, a 49-year-old Lafayette County native, worked for 25 years as an educator and came out of retirement for the superintendent’s job once held by his father.

Foster spent nine years as superintendent of the Senatobia Municipal School District, before retiring in June 2020. The Lafayette County superintendent’s job lured him out of that retirement. He said he always wanted to lead the school district and felt he didn’t have education completely out of his system when he retired.

“It’s the people that you miss. It’s being part of a team, the challenge to make the district the best it can be,” Foster told the newspaper. “Lafayette County has always had a strong history of excellence in all areas, and I just was excited about that opportunity so I decided to jump back in.”

He succeeds Adam Pugh, who worked as Lafayette County superintendent for nine years.