New leadership has been chosen at two area schools following retirements.

Bill Crockett was chosen as the new principal of the Clay County Area Technology Center filling the void left by the retirement of Anthony Young.  Jimmy Dezarn was picked as the new Clay County Middle School vice-principal following the retirement of Jamie Hollin.

Superintendent William Sexton said the district lost two valuable men in Young and Hollin but felt the two replacements would do an excellent job.

“Both men are very good educators and I look forward to working with them in the future,” Sexton said.

Crockett has spent his entire 27-year career at the technology center and looks forward to this new challenge.

“Throughout my tenure, I’ve witnessed firsthand the difference vocational education makes in the lives of our students and community,” he said.  “Needless to say, I’m a huge proponent of career and technical education.  Serving as principal, I look forward to continuing the tradition of success at Clay ATC.”

Crockett’s wife, Jennifer, has 21 years of experience in the classroom.  She currently directs Goose Rock Elementary’s Save the Children Program.

They have two sons, Gabe and Hayden.  Gabe, the oldest, just completed his freshman year at EKU while Hayden will enter high school as a freshman.

Crockett says he will bring high expectations to his staff and school.

“Collectively, our primary goals focus upon ensuring students become career ready and meet individual benchmarks,” he said.  “Clay ATC students receive industry and technical training within the framework of a vocational classroom.  Currently, we have one of the top carpentry programs in the entire state.  Vocational training not only instills quality work ethic, but prepares our students to enter the workforce upon graduation.”

Crockett says working with local industries will be a key during his administration.

“Building solid relationships within the community and partnering with business and industry leaders help promote the success of the vocational school,” he said.  “Based on our school’s location and original date of construction (1966), I’m a strong advocate for a new vocational school located on or near the CCHS campus.”

That’s also something the board of education hopes to accomplish in the coming years- a new on-campus facility.

CCMS vice-principal

A familiar face for students and staff will take over as Principal Steve Burchfield’s assistant principal and leader of the Horse Creek Learning Center.

He has 14 years of experience in the classroom and has served as coach of the middle school basketball team.

He was named to the position Monday afternoon.

“I am very honored to have the opportunity to serve as assistant principal at CCMS,” he said.  “I appreciate Mr. Sexton and Mr. Burchfield for allowing me this great opportunity.”

Dezarn has a good rappore with the students and staff at CCMS and says he knows he’s got ‘big shoes’ to fill with the departure of Mr. Hollin.

“I do have some big shoes to fill,” he said.  “Mr. Hollin was a great ambassador for our school and our district.  We have a great staff, so I know the transition will be easy for me.”

Dezarn’s wife Cindy is a physical therapist and they have two children, Cooper, 9, and Taylor, 7, both students at Manchester Elementary.

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