• Independence superintendent moving to Shawnee Mission School District

  • Jim Hinson has announced he is leaving the Independence School District for a position on the other side of the state line.

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  • Jim Hinson has announced he is leaving the Independence School District for a position on the other side of the state line.
    The Shawnee Mission School District Board of Education announced Monday evening that Hinson, who has been the Independence superintendent the last 12 years, will become the superintendent of that Kansas school district beginning July 1.
    “I am taking this opportunity to officially retire from the state of Missouri,” Hinson said in a video message posted on the school district’s website. “This has been a very very difficult decision. But the timing is right not only for myself and my family, but for the Independence School District. We have made a tremendous amount of progress, a lot of things have been accomplished. But I feel like it’s time for new leadership in the Independence School District.”
    Hinson was instrumental in the 2008 annexation that moved western Independence schools from the Kansas City School District and into the Independence School District. Since then enrollment has soared, forcing the district to build two new elementary schools. The latest, Mallinson Elementary, will open in August in Sugar Creek.
    Independence has also been awarded the Distinction in Performance Award, Missouri’s highest honor, repeatedly in the last decade. This recognition takes into account academics as well as graduation rate and post-secondary preparation. Social workers have been brought into every school and partnerships have been created with mental and dental health professions, showing that the schools’ role in a child’s life goes beyond academics
    Ann Franklin, Independence Board of Education president said Hinson’s “vision, leadership and can-do attitude accounts for many initiatives implemented during his tenure.”
    “The Independence School District made history during Dr. Hinson’s tenure with the successful annexation of western Independence,” she said. “He fearlessly brought the school board, teachers and staff, parents, community members, faith-based groups, political leaders and others together to make education better for all those students.”
    With Hinson’s resignation, the Independence Board of Education will begin the search for a new superintendent immediately.
    In Shawnee Mission, Hinson will replace Dr. Gene Johnson, who is retiring at the end of the school year.

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