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New Jefferson City Public Schools Superintendent Ramps Up Relations

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Jefferson City Public Schools
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  The Jefferson City Public School system is under new leadership. On July 1st, Larry Linthacum began as superintendent of the district. He was appointed to replace former superintendent Brian Mitchell with a unanimous vote by the school board last December.

With only nine days under his belt as the new Superintendent of Jefferson City Public Schools, the first thing on Larry Linthacum’s agenda is building relationships.

Linthacum said over the next three months, he plans to visit every school building in the district and have a conversation with staff. This, he said, will help create channels for communication in the future.

Enrollment in Jefferson City has increased dramatically in recent years and there’s been discussion about new facilities. Linthacum said that’s on his radar but he wants to assess the need before the district commits to any plans.

“Will there be some long-range facilities planning going in the future? Absolutely, we’re doing that now,” he said. “We’ll try to communicate that with transparency and to have a plan as we move forward to provide the best education we can for our kids.”

In addition to teaching and serving as an administrator in other Missouri school districts, Linthacum coached football and basketball. He said he plans to draw from that experience as superintendent.

“At times you’re a cheerleader, and at times you’re a referee, and times you’re a counselor and you’re listening,” he said. “But you kind of put it all together and you work together for something you believe in. And I believe in public education and I’m excited about that.”

Linthacum said his three top priorities are “ensuring that kids are learning, ensuring that we're partnering with the community and ensuring we're being a good steward of our patrons' money."

Abigail Keel is a senior student at the Missouri School of Journalism. She is originally from St. Louis, Missouri and grew up hating the drone of public radio in her parent's car. In high school, she had a job picking up trash in a park where she listened to podcasts for entertainment and made a permanent switch to public-radio lover. She's volunteered and interned for Third Coast International Audio Festival in Chicago, IL, and worked on the KBIA shows Faith and Values, Intersection and CoMO Explained.
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