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School board offers superintendent’s job to Hughes

Crisp County Assistant School Superintendent Cindy Hughes will take over as the county’s schools chief on July 1 when current Superintendent David Mims’ retirement becomes official on June 30.

The school board approved the hire at Tuesday’s regular meeting by a 4-2 vote. Despite the lack of a unanimous decision, Board Member Scott Forehand, who voted against the hiring along with Justin Posey, said the dissenters were not against Hughes herself but wanted to see the hiring process opened up to a wider range of candidates.

Board Chairman Lonnie Helms said that the schools in Crisp County – and the students’ quality of education – have improved steadily over the past several years, and that Hughes has the skills to continue that trend.

“You’ve got somebody who knows how the system works. It was more a matter of someone who could hit the ground running. We know exactly what we’re getting with Cindy Hughes,” he said. “I think she’s going to make as perfect a transition as there could possibly be.”

Helms added that the transition is especially important given the fact that ground will be broken in the near future on a new middle school.

Vice Chair Lydia Adkins, who made the motion at Tuesday’s meeting to offer the superintendent’s position to Hughes, said she agreed with Helms and that Hughes’ devotion to Crisp County students was an important factor in selecting her.

“She is just a top-rate person. She’s caring and hard-working. She does whatever needs to be done for the children whenever it needs to be done. She is committed to our schools,” Adkins said about Hughes. “There are a lot of positives going on in our system right now, and Cindy has been in our system for years.”

Hughes has worked in the Crisp County school system for 30 years along with prior stints in Jasper County and Sumter County.

Superintendent Mims expressed congratulations to Hughes and confidence in her abilities.

“I am looking forward to the transition period with the new superintendent,” he said. “I’m very excited to be able to work with Mrs. Hughes and I think she’ll do a great job.”