Floyd County leaders ‘take over’ schools for a day

Principal for a Day program provides insight into school successes, challenges

FLOYD COUNTY, Ky. (WTVQ) – Floyd County schools got some ‘new’ principals recently when local leaders took over as ‘principals for a day.’ School Superintendent Anna ShepherdLaferty At FchsHarris At Aes said the program offers an inside look into education.

“As with most things in life, experience is a valuable teacher. Often you don’t truly understand what something is like until you are the one doing it and that’s why we’re so happy to see our elected officials eagerly accept our invitation to be the Principal for a Day. We’ve always had wonderful relationships with our local officials and the eagerness they’ve shown to help in any way possible is inspiring,” Shepherd said.

These visits are part of the Principal for a Day Program which was enacted during the 2021 Legislative session as part of House Concurrent Resolution 25, co-sponsored by Representatives Steve Riley, Ed Massey, Ruth Ann Palumbo, and Phillip Pratt.

“The Principal for a Day program was designed to give legislators a first-hand look at what is going on in Kentucky schools and to build stronger partnerships between legislators and public education,” said Riley. “We want the PFAD program to be a meaningful experience for legislators to experience the challenges and sometimes difficult responsibilities of school leadership.”

State Representative Ashley Tackett Laferty visited Prestonsburg Elementary, Floyd Central High School and Betsy Layne High School. County Judge Executive Robbie Williams visitedMayor Fultz Fchs Greta ThorsnberryWilliams At Jms Stumbo Elementary and South Floyd Elementary. Judge Johnny Ray Harris visited Allen Elementary and Betsy Layne Elementary, Sheriff John Hunt visited May Valley Elementary and Duff-Allen Central Elementary, Prestonsburg Mayor Les Stapleton visited Prestonsburg Elementary, Adams Middle and Prestonsburg High, and Wayland Mayor Jerry Fultz visited Floyd Central High School.

During the visit, officials experienced what it is like to lead a school. They talked with students, observed classes, toured the school, assisted in teacher meetings, answered phone calls and more. 

Prestonsburg Mayor Stapleton says, “Being a principal today is not what it was when I was a kid. Here’s what I saw in the first 30 minutes – it’s one of the toughest and one of the most rewarding jobs ever.

“These folks have a lot of responsibility. They take care of kids, the staff and the building. They are counselor/friend/cheerleader/ disciplinarian/substitute parent and teacher to the kids. And they really love their students and worry about them almost like their own children.” Stapleton continued. “My hat’s off to school principals and the challenging jobs they do. Taking part in Principal for a Day has educated me a little more and I think all elected officials, parents and community members need to step up and support our schools. We all want the same thing – successful, happy students- so let’s do our part to help!”

“We are thankful to live in a district where so many of our officials are willing to step into a different role for a while in an attempt to better understand the role and how this impacts our youngest citizens. The Board of Education and I want to thank these folks for their participation in being Principal for a Day and for their continued support of our students and schools. We are happy to say that our elected officials are “roWINg and groWINg” with us for the good of children of Floyd County,” Shepherd concluded.

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