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Examiner
  • Hinson: 'Phenomenal people in Independence'

  • One phrase describes the tone Independence Superintendent Jim Hinson tried to set for the district, “What’s best for kids.”



    “This has been about us,” he said during Tuesday’s Independence Board of Education meeting. “It isn’t about individual accomplishments. We did not do anything by ourselves. We did it by all working together.”

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  • One phrase describes the tone Independence Superintendent Jim Hinson tried to set for the district, “What’s best for kids.”
    “This has been about us,” he said during Tuesday’s Independence Board of Education meeting. “It isn’t about individual accomplishments. We did not do anything by ourselves. We did it by all working together.”
    Tuesday was Hinson’s last Board of Education meeting in Independence. Hinson will take a position as superintendent in the Shawnee Mission School District beginning July 1.
    Current deputy superintendent Dale Herl will become the Independence superintendent in July.
    “Thank you for inspiring us to expand our vision and challenging us to stretch and grow personally and as a board,” said board member Jana Waits. “Thank you for your leadership, vision and heart. You are leaving the Independence School District better than you found it.”
    While several significant things have happened in the Independence district under Hinson’s direction, the one he will be most remembered for is the annexation of western Independence. Hinson, along with other community and state leaders, led the effort to move the seven schools out of the Kansas City district into Independence. After a vote in favor of the annexation in 2007, the seven schools opened their doors in summer 2008 as Independence schools.
    “You brought the entire community together to do something that had never been done before,” Waits said. “It is probably something you will be saddled with or recognized for for a long time to come.”
    Hinson came to Independence in 2001 as deputy superintendent. After serving in that position for one year, he become superintendent replacing David Rock. He started his education career almost 30 years ago as a middle school teacher before becoming the superintendent of both the Granby and Greenfield school districts in Missouri.
    “I am so happy to have worked here, lived here and to call Independence my home. We have been far more blessed than I will ever be able to give back,” he said. “I know the decision to leave is the right thing to do. It is the right time. The best days of the Independence School District are yet to come, and Independence will forever be in my heart.”
     
     

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