Laurence Pender is the current principal of Cottondale Elementary School. He told us he's had his fair share of experience as a principal in the Jackson County school system, and he used that credential on his resume when he applied to keep his administrative position in the upcoming school year.
"The new superintendent has decided that we're all going to apply for whatever position we want in the district" Pender explained. He's put the director's positions up, the principals and the assistant principals. And then he's told us all that we need to apply."
Administrators have a one year contract, but in the past have typically resigned or were reassigned to a new position.
"Competition drives everything" Pender said. "I've tried my best forever to be the best principal I can be. And, if he thinks I need to move up, or I need to move over, or I need to move across, I'm going to do so. And now I have an opportunity."
True to the nature of competition, Pender also realized he was not guaranteed a job next year
"I'm sure there are a lot of assistant principals who have applied for principal positions- which is a good thing. And a lot of teachers, and even some people who have degrees in other things, who have applied for assistant principal positions" he said.
Jackson County Superintendent, Steve Benton was out of the office Friday- unavailable to comment on the matter.