MANSFIELD -- The Mansfield City Schools Board of Education formally welcomed Stan Jefferson to the district at Tuesday night's board meeting.
The board took a recess from its regular meeting to hold a reception in his honor. Jefferson was greeted with a round of applause in the meeting, and then met with dozens of community members.
"Always great to back and always glad to be a TY Tyger. I'm just very happy, and I'm thankful to the Mansfield Board of Education, and our community for allowing me to be back home," Jefferson said. "I'm looking forward to working with all of our employees of our great school district from the support staff, to the instructional staff, to all of our coaches, to all of our administrators, to working with community agencies, to working with our board."
Jefferson believes the district and all of its employees should champion children in the district, helping them to be the best they can be.
"We've got to be the champion in the lives of our kids, we have to be able for that child from when they step on that school bus to the time they enter our building and when they walk into their first period class," he said. "To the time they get back on that bus, we have to be a champion in the lives of those children.
"If we truly believe in that statement -- it takes a village to raise a child -- then that's... all of us are working for the betterment of that child."
He detailed a "100 day re-entry plan," where he'd listen and observe in hopes to identify what is going well and what could be done differently in regards to academic reform, conducive environments and student and parent engagement.
"I feel that once we do that, we'll be able to implement the plan," he said.
Jefferson will assume the role of superintendent on Aug. 1, but says he's already been working closely with current superintendent Brian Garverick.
"Brian and I were assistant principals together at the old high school. We did all kinds of work as administrators," Jefferson said. "Brian and I coached together, as in when I was coaching football here. Brian was the alternative school principal when I was the principal at the high school.
"So we have a relationship that goes many, many years (back), so this transition part has been productive. It's gone very smooth as we transition to me becoming the superintendent. We've worked very well together."
Garverick will transition into a new role, the director of alternative programs for K-12. The description of the alternative programs is still being drafted, but the board approved hiring a dean and two full-time tutors at Tuesday's meeting. These positions may be posted as early as Wednesday morning.
Garverick also expressed a desire to have a community health worker, which could possibly be acquired through a grant, and a full-time secretary.
And as for Jefferson, he noted a "sense of energy" from many people he's already met with in the district.
"We are ready to do great things, and we will do great things because of the fact that we want to grow," he said. "We're going to grow as a community, we're going to grow as a school district and we're going to grow as people."