Putnam City Schools Superintendent Paul Hurst has announced that he is retiring effective June 30, 2013.
, 62, says he
has enjoyed his
time with Putnam City
"The work I'm involved in here is satisfying, productive and rewarding.
I've never been around a more dedicated, focused group of people who work so thoughtfully and so hard to make marvelous things happen for kids.
It will be difficult to leave, but this is a moment in my life when I need to turn my attention to other things," Hurst
Hurst became Putnam City's 22nd superintendent on July 1, 2008.
A 37-year veteran of public education, Hurst is a member of the .Oklahoma Educators Hall of Fame and a former Oklahoma School Administrator of the Year.
He came to Putnam City from Tahlequah Public Schools, where he served as superintendent for seven years.
Before his time in Tahlequah, he was with Mid-Del Schools for more than 24 years, serving at the district level as assistant superintendent and director of Secondary Instruction and at the building level as a junior high school principal, assistant principal and teacher.
In his five years as Putnam City superintendent, Hurst has led the district through challenges in some areas and helped the district make major strides in others.
Like other school districts across the state, Putnam City
in recent years has dealt with revenue shortfalls and budget cuts as Oklahoma suffered its worst financial crisis in history.
In response, Hurst
led administrators through a process of identifying and implementing measures that significantly strengthened district finances.
Even in the midst of budget challenges, Hurst and district staff reallocated district resources and worked with community partners to expand full-day prekindergarten programs from just a handful of children in full-day prekindergarten in 2008 to more than 1,000 this year.
Hurst's energy was instrumental in obtaining an Americorps grant and adding after-school programs at selected district schools as well as the passage of the district's largest-ever bond proposal in 2009, a proposal which now is funding important improvements at schools across the district.
time and effort have likewise been essential as Putnam City
implemented major state initiatives such as teaching Common Core State Standards and use of sophisticated new evaluations for teachers and administrators.
says there is still more in front of him.
"There's still a lot to be done.
The work of school districts is to always find new and better ways to make instruction, relationships and programs be as wholesome and meaningful for children as they can be.
Those issues draw our intense focus now and it will continue to draw the attention of the superintendent and staff in the future," Hurst
Putnam City Superintendents
The superintendent's position in Putnam City
is noted for its stability.
Paul Hurst was just the sixth superintendent hired by the district since 1950.
The five Putnam City superintendents before Hurst
held their positions for an average of 11 ½ years, substantially longer than the national average of about 2 ½ years for superintendents in urban areas.
2008-2013, Paul Hurst