Superintendent Atkins Talks With Residents

By: Autria Godfrey
By: Autria Godfrey

July 2, 2006

Charlottesville city schools will see some changes starting this week when Rosa Atkins officially takes over as superintendent.

Atkins has been serving Virginia public schools for 25 years and starting this week, she will be serving the city of Charlottesville. On Sunday she met with some locals to introduce herself to the community and get a feel of what residents are looking forward to in the coming school year.

"Educating our children is not just about what happens in the central office," she said.

Atkins opened up the meet and greet ceremony today with inspirational words about the directions she hopes to take in the coming school year.

Charlottesville residents joined Atkins at the Mt. Zion African Baptist Church to welcome her to the city and her new role as school superintendent.

"I'm excited about the idea of a new time, a new day, a new beginning for the parents, students and teachers in Charlottesville school system," said Charles Alexander, Education Consultant.

After last year's controversy in the school system's administration, Mayor Brown says she certainly has her work cut out for her, especially when it comes to tackling some academic issues.

"Raising test scores, narrowing the achievement gap [is] one of the big ones, and that gives her a focus right off the bat. But, like any school system, we have a lot of challenges and I think she's a good person to lead us," Mayor Brown explained.

Brown is also optimistic about this year because of how well-received Atkins has been in Charlottesville in the past few months. "People have been very impressed with her and very impressed with how she listens, her genuine interest, her sharpness, and I think people are really thrilled to have her come," he said.

Atkins was officially appointed last February but will be starting off her duties as superintendent on Wednesday by visiting some of the nine different schools that she will oversee.

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