NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Acting Superintendent Sharon I. Byrdsong has been appointed to a permanent role as superintendent of Norfolk Public Schools.

Byrdsong’s appointment was announced Wednesday following a seven-month search for a new superintendent.

Byrdsong was appointed as the acting superintendent on June 19, 2019.

Byrdsong has worked in Norfolk schools for more than 20 years, starting an an assistant principal and eventually making her way to the new superintendent role.

She has earned the Outstanding Principal of Virginia Award from the Virginia Association of Secondary Principals, and also was named National Middle School Principal of the Year by the National Association of Secondary School Principals.

“She was recognized then for her work as a turnaround specialist, able to take a school struggling with performance issues to one known for making great gains. She has that intuitive ability to both plan ahead and make on the spot course corrections. We believe that level of acumen and commitment is what Norfolk Public Schools deserves,” said School Board Chair Noelle Gabriel.

Byrdsong has also worked in leadership roles in Norfolk Public Schools central administration, including senior director of alternative options, executive director of secondary schools, assistant superintendent of human resources, chief of staff, and executive director of interagency collaboration and wraparound services.

The more than three-year contract would come with a nearly $230,000 yearly salary with benefits including a $7,200 per year car allowance.

“I cannot begin to convey how humbled I am to be named the superintendent of Norfolk Public Schools. I have spent the majority of my career here and I am a firm believer in the equalizing power of public education. Every child in this city deserves a high quality education and I want to be part of the team that makes that happen. I also believe that schools work best when they work in partnership with the parents and communities that they serve. I will build on those strong connections because together we can make a positive difference for the thousands of children who walk through our doors daily,” Byrdsong said.

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