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Elaine Farris Wants to Return to Fayette Co. as Superintendent

By Brenna Angel

LEXINGTON, Ky. – A former Fayette County Public Schools administrator returned to Lexington Thursday as the third and final candidate to interview for the job of FCPS superintendent. Elaine Farris, who now heads up Clark County schools, says closing student achievement gaps requires specific strategies.

"You have to look at individual students and we have to put a name with the face. It's not just numbers of students that are not there yet. And the last question I ask at the monitoring meetings to my principals is what can I do, or what can we do to support you in ensuring the kids are meeting the standards?"

Farris, who previously served as an elementary schools director in Fayette County, spoke at a public forum Thursday night. She answered the same questions that candidates Lu Young and Tom Shelton responded to earlier this week.

When asked about how she would make sure students have high quality teachers, Farris said that she prefers teachers to be highly effective as opposed to just having the required certification.

"The biggest thing I think that happens with a highly effective teacher is they have established that relationship with each and every student. And the student knows that they care about their success in that classroom."

The FCPS Board of Education began deliberations at 7 a.m. Friday. Current superintendent Stu Silberman is retiring and will soon head up the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence.