UPDATE: Danville School Board Takes Public Comment On Search for New Superintendent


Danville, VA - One word was repeated throughout Thursday night's school board meeting to describe the theme of last school year in Danville: "change".

During the public comment section, speakers discussed the uncertainty students faced after school closures, staff changes, and the resignation of Superintendent Edward Newsome last month.

"We need a stable environment and a stable leadership to have a successful school year, " said one Danville Public Schools employee.

Many who took the floor felt that stability could come from Dr. Kathy Osborne.

"I have seen firsthand many times Dr. Osborne make those tough decisions. I have also seen that those decisions are based on heart, " said a parent.

Osborne has been with Danville Public Schools for years as an assistant superintendent. She stepped up as acting superintendent last month. Her supporters say looking any further would be a waste of resources.

"To search for another candidate for the position would not be a good use of our board's time and energy. We have a highly qualified, respected and trusted individual in house, " said Catherine Lassiter, Principal of Forrest Hills Forestary.

Some people expressed the desire for a thorough search, even if it leads the board back to someone local.

Board members say this is just the first of many meetings they will hold to get community feedback, and from the looks of things, the community will be ready to continue the conversation.


Danville, VA - Dozens of people came out to tell the Danville School Board what they want to see in the next Superintendent.Thursday's meeting is the first time they've discussed the upcoming search process since Edward Newsome stepped down last month.School Board Chairman Ed Polhamus started the meeting by saying "community input" is going to be "vital" in the search process ahead.When the public comment section opened, parents and Danville School employees touched on just how many changes the school system has seen in the last year - from school closures to the loss of the newly hired Superintendent.Some said they want their next leader to be a person with both teaching and administrative experience.Transportation Director Michael Adkins expressed his support of current interim Superintendent Cathy Osborne as the person for the job, and most everyone in attendance stood in agreement."It is our belief that we have such a leader among us in Dr. Cathy Osborne. To search for another candidate for the position would not be a wise use of or board's time or energy, " said Catherine Lassiter, Principal of Forest Hills Elementary School.