Cobb school board names Ragsdale interim Superintendent
by Haisten Willis
April 10, 2014 10:50 AM | 4447 views | 6 6 comments | 34 34 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Cobb County School Deputy Superintendent of Operational Support Chris Ragsdale fields questions from the media Thursday after being named the sole interim superintendent finalist to replace outgoing Superintendent Michael Hinojosa. Staff/Kelly J. Huff
Cobb County School Deputy Superintendent of Operational Support Chris Ragsdale fields questions from the media Thursday after being named the sole interim superintendent finalist to replace outgoing Superintendent Michael Hinojosa. Staff/Kelly J. Huff
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Cobb County Superintendent Michael Hinojosa was on hand Thursday to watch Deputy Superintendent of Operational Support Chris Ragsdale named as the sole interim superintendent finalist. Pending Board approval, Ragsdale will replace Hinojosa who is exiting the position to return to his home state of Texas. Staff/Kelly J. Huff
Cobb County Superintendent Michael Hinojosa was on hand Thursday to watch Deputy Superintendent of Operational Support Chris Ragsdale named as the sole interim superintendent finalist. Pending Board approval, Ragsdale will replace Hinojosa who is exiting the position to return to his home state of Texas. Staff/Kelly J. Huff
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Ragsdale Interim Superintendent Slideshow
Cobb County Deputy Superintendent of Operational Support Chris Ragsdale, along with Board Chairwoman Kathleen Angelucci and Vice Chairman Randy Scamihorn, enter the board room Thursday to announce that Ragsdale is the sole interim superintendent finalist. Pending Board approval, Ragsdale will replace existing superintendent Michael Hinojosa. Staff/Kelly J. Huff
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MARIETTA— As expected, the Cobb County Board of Education named Chris Ragsdale, deputy superintendent of operational support, as the sole finalist for interim superintendent during a 9:30 a.m. press conference Thursday at district headquarters.

Ragsdale was selected from among seven candidates to fill the role left by Superintendent Michael Hinojosa, who announced in February he was resigning effective May 31 to move back home to Dallas, Texas.

Board of Education Chairwoman Kathy Angelucci said Ragsdale will be officially named interim superintendent on April 24. His term will last from May 2014 to May 2015. Both the board and Ragsdale said it was “premature” to speculate whether Ragsdale might stay on beyond next year.

“Time will tell,” he said.

Angelucci pointed out that three school board members are up for re-election this year, saying she didn’t want to tie the hands of the next board.

Ragsdale came to Cobb in 2006 when he was hired by then-Superintendent Fred Sanderson as chief information officer. He held the same position at Paulding County Schools during his time there from 1992 to 2006.

Peppered with questions about the upcoming budget situation, Ragsdale hinted that the school district might be able to return to a 180-day school year and eliminate furlough days, though he said it will take time.

“We want to provide teachers with an optimal environment,” Ragsdale said.

With the promotion, Ragsdale’s pay will jump from $135,000 to $185,000. Hinojosa’s base pay was $247,625.

As Cobb’s deputy superintendent of operations, Ragsdale oversaw a staff of about 2,000, including such departments as technology, SPLOST, construction, maintenance and safety.

Ragsdale, 45, was born in Marietta’s Kennestone Hospital and grew up in Paulding County, where he lives with his family, including his 12-year-old daughter. His mother, Brenda Ragsdale, is a retired Paulding County elementary school teacher, and his father, Glen, retired as vice president of an industrial air-conditioning company.

Ragsdale received a bachelor of science in information systems at Kennesaw State University and is enrolled in Shorter University’s executive MBA program.

John Adams, executive director of Educators First, a nonunion professional association representing about 2,000 teachers, the bulk of whom are in Cobb, is a former Cobb police officer, teacher and Cobb School District human resources director. Adams said he’s known Ragsdale for 11 years and worked with him closely for a majority of that time. Adams said if the board appoints Ragsdale as interim superintendent, it would be “a great decision.”

“It represents a bold departure from the same old, same old,” Adams said. “It shows that the board is willing to do something different to try to get an even better result. I think it’s a great opportunity for the central office to restore the trust of the teachers and the people on the front lines.”



Comments
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Truth Be Known
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April 10, 2014
Truth be known, CR has created his own empire: creating departments, raising central office salaries, getting rid of those that oppose him.
Questions....
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April 10, 2014
I'm cautiously optimistic with Ragsdale. Anything has to be better than what is going on now. My 2 concerns:

1. No background in education.

2. Does not live in Cobb County. Every other school district around the country where I've lived and taught have required the Superintendent to reside in the area where he works.
Totally Disgusted!!!
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April 10, 2014
Are you kidding me???? I heard that the lunchroom lady was ready to step in as the deputy superintendent after the 'Techie' moves into the big office. Just what was the board thinking??? Duh - nothing. I am unsure how you could create a greater morale problem than hire a man with a B.S. in computer science to lead an organization that promotes higher learning and is one of the largest school systems in the country.
Thank You.....
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April 10, 2014
The Cobb County Board of Education has made me laugh harder than I have in a long time at the foolishness of their actions. While I am sure Mr. Ragsdale has some things to bring to the table, it is only a matter of time before this backfires in an epic way.

He has been used to spending SPLOST money for years and is oblivious on how to handle the shortfall we have presently. I can only imagine the back room conversations that went on behind the closed doors of the "Personnel" meetings. This is a thoroughly inept move. No offense to Mr. Ragsdale, but this is out of your leage. Time will tell that this is a fiasco.

Just curious, how many furlough days has Mr. Ragsdale taken in the last 4-5 years?
The Knower
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April 10, 2014
In other Cobb School news, the inside word is that Ryan Brady, an assistant coach at Hillgrove High School, is being tapped as the new head football coach for Campbell High School.
Cobbwatcher
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April 10, 2014
I heard that there is prostitution on all the schools and I heard Chris Ragsdale is fully aware of it. If you have a federal system go to all the Cobb County Schools and take it off. Some say they have found it on the kids as well. Thank you.
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