By Nicole Hennessy
On Aug. 1, Olmsted Falls will welcome a new superintendent, Dr. Jim Lloyd, who will spend the summer acquainting himself with the duties that come with the promotion.
Lloyd, the district’s current assistant superintendent, considers this continuity of leadership within Olmsted Falls’ school system as a sign of success.
He said for any company that is doing well, it is smart to promote people and hire from within.
Still, the next few months will serve as a learning experience for him as he navigates Chamber of Commerce meetings, gaining a better understanding of issues having to do with budget and controlling costs.
Of current superintendent, Dr. Todd Hoadley, who’s transferring to Dublin, Ohio, Lloyd said, “We work very closely together,” insisting that their close relationship combined with his existing knowledge of the district will make the transition as seamless as possible.
In April, when the Board of Education named Lloyd the new superintendent, it did so unanimously.
“We have known Dr. Lloyd for many years, and he has been an incredible asset to our district,” said board President Jim Weisbarth. “We are pleased to have been able to secure him as our next superintendent and are confident he will continue to lead our district on its path of excellence.”
For the past six years, Lloyd has served as assistant superintendent, having been promoted from a school psychologist position he’d held since 1995. For the nine years prior to he worked as director of pupil services for Westlake City Schools.
Having worked his way up through the district, Lloyd accepts his new position with optimism and enthusiasm.
“I am honored to serve as the next superintendent of this outstanding district,” he said. “It will be a pleasure to continue to work with our exceptional staff, hardworking students and supportive parents in this new capacity.”
At some point during the summer, he and his wife, Rhonda, will also be relocating to Olmsted Falls with their three children, Mason (10th grade), Tommy (7th grade) and Maggie (4th grade) – and all three children will attend Olmsted Falls schools, a move that reflects his confidence in the district.
With a failed 0.65-mill levy earlier in May and about a year out from negotiations with staff and teachers, Lloyd will have his hands full, but he likes to think about all the good he could do, particularly in terms of integrating technology into the classrooms.
“Technology is a huge deal,” he said, “but it’s not just about buying devices.” It’s about actually integrating them into instruction.
Especially in the fields of design and graphic arts, he thinks preparing students before they go to college will help them realize and learn all they can about fields that will lead to jobs in the future.
Something he already participates in and plans to continue is regional collaboration between his district and those nearby.
He says lines of communication are open, so that each district can get answers to their questions and figure out the best way to operate, ensuring students are receiving the best instruction possible.
For now, learning about how to implement his passions in the district is what he’ll focus on.
“For me,” said Lloyd, “this is a dream come true.”