Gilliard receives solid marks on evaluation


CAIRO — Grady County Schools Superintendent Kermit Gilliard received decent marks on a recent performance evaluation by the county board of education, but there remains room for improvement.

Gilliard received a score of 4.2 out of a potential maximum of five points, or about "average to above-average," according to school board chair Teresa Gee Hardy.

"There's always areas that can be improved," Hardy said.

Gilliard's score was announced following an hour-long school board executive session in which the superintendent's performance was evaluated. The score was compiled using criteria including student achievement and communication.

Hardy said afterward that Grady County is lucky to have a superintendent of Gilliard's caliber.

"He understands education," she said, "but more importantly he understands people and students. I think he has good relationships with the people in your community — our parents, our students and our staff."

Gilliard has been superintendent since 2015 after having served Grady County schools in several capacities, including as a teacher, the director of special education, a principal at Eastside Elementary School and Washington Middle School and as assistant superintendent of operations and leadership. The 1985 Cairo High School graduate also briefly served as interim principal at his alma mater in 2014 while maintaining his role as assistant superintendent

Hardy said Gilliard's lengthy 29-year career with the Grady County school system is one of his greatest assets.

"He knows the community," she said. "He knows the students and he has their best interests at heart."

Gilliard's current tenure as superintendent will expire next June at the conclusion of the 2020-21 school year, subject to renewal by the board of education.

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