Frederick to lead Halifax schools

Board picks county native

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Posted: Tuesday, December 8, 2009 12:00 am

HALIFAX — There was considerable nervousness at Central Office for the Halifax County School District Monday. People waited impatiently for board members to come out of closed session and into an open meeting. The recommendation for the superintendent’s post was on the agenda and while most were hopeful they had an idea of who it might be, few knew for certain.

When Board chair Debbie Hardy made the announcement Interim Superintendent Elease Frederick accepted a contract and she was recommending her for the position, the room exploded into applause. Hardy had to wait for the room to die down before the board voted its unanimous support to make Frederick the new school chief.

“I’m so proud,” Hardy said. “Ms. Frederick has been faithful a long time.” She mentioned this recommendation was supported by the Department of Public Instruction and they had been instrumental in making the decision.

In an earlier interview with Dr. Pat Ashley with the Department of Public Instruction, she would not divulge a name, but did say, “I’m very pleased with the choice the school system made. It’s not that we didn’t have good choices. There were a lot of good choices. But this was the best choice.”

Hardy gave the floor to Frederick, who was excited and positive in her appointment. “I’ve stood up here so many times,” she said. “It’s different this time. It’s a very good different!”

Frederick thanked everyone for their support then reminded everyone it was time to work together to attain the goals the district is striving to meet. “Working together really works,” she said.

She continued by saying this was a dream come true for her, she will continue to work to erase the barriers which prevent students from accomplishing their goals. “We must do this and we must do this now,” she said.

She expressed her concern about attendance. She encouraged the staff and teachers to come to work. “You need to come to work,” she said. “You don’t have to work my hours, but you must work yours … You know what I’m talking about!”

She reiterated working together really works and said this would be the schools belief and motto. “Are you still with me?”

Again the room exploded in applause. People rose to their feet in support. Frederick’s first official act as superintendent was to give stickers to the Student of the Month Northwest High School senior Antonio Alston, his mother and principal. She joked the board had given her a hard time at the last meeting because they ran out. “I have plenty of them this time,” she said. She laughed and held up the roll, then she shook Alston’s hand. Frederick expressed her pride in his accomplishment and encouraged him to continue.

Dr. Elease Frederick is a 40-year employee of the Halifax County School System. A Halifax County native, she is a graduate of Inborden High School, she earned a Bachelor’s of Science in Elementary Education from Winston-Salem State University and master’s in Intermediate Education from N.C. Central, an eds. degree from East Carolina and a doctorate in Educational Leadership from NOVA University.

Frederick has served in numerous leadership positions in Halifax County, including associate superintendent, assistant superintendent, principal and lead teacher. She has been a district support coach, teaching specialist and elementary school teacher. Most recently she served as interim superintendent after the resignation of Geraldine Middleton.

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Welcome to the discussion.


  • anonymous posted at 8:13 am on Tue, Dec 15, 2009.

    anonymous Posts: 0

    I think the decision is insane! Why hire a person that has been a part of an ongoing problem? Additionally, schools like Halifax County need leaders that have CEO experience along with previous exposure to sucessful districts. This woman hasn't been out of her county other than to attend college. Why do you keep doing this to our children? Do you really want change? I'm amazed with the selection. She is too traditional and aged. Reform will probably not be of interest to her.

  • anonymous posted at 5:56 am on Sat, Dec 12, 2009.

    anonymous Posts: 0

    More of the same? How will this improve this district?

  • anonymous posted at 2:15 pm on Fri, Dec 11, 2009.

    anonymous Posts: 0

    It is about time that the Halifax County Board of Education make a positive decision on behalf of our "future leaders", our children. For over a decade, I have consistently read negative articles that have been written about our school system,only praying and hoping that there would one day be a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. The rainbow was seen when they announced that Dr. Fredrick would be the Interim Superintendent! The pot of gold is the announcement that she has been finally named as the Superintendent!! Debbie Hardy is obvious a better Board Chair than her predecessor (Tyrone Williams), Dr. Elease Fredrick will be a better Superintendent than her predecessors (Geraldine Middleton and Willie Gilchrist).I applaud this decision and we all will sit back and watch how Dr. Fredrick will clean up the mess that has been made by others.In Dr. Fredrick you will find the following characteristics: honesty, dedication, stamina, motivation and last but not least love. She will get the job done, so all of you who are just working to obtain a paycheck and not working because you care and want to make a difference in our children, WATCH OUT!!!!!!!!

  • anonymous posted at 7:30 am on Fri, Dec 11, 2009.

    anonymous Posts: 0

    Why would you hire someone who has been part of the problem for 40 years? She may be a fine lady, she may be an excellent employee. She may not have been part of the problem, but she sure hasn't done anything to fix the problem in the last 40 years. Any logical thinking person would know that this hire should have came from the outside.

  • anonymous posted at 4:44 am on Wed, Dec 9, 2009.

    anonymous Posts: 0

    Congratulations Dr. Fredrick. You were my 6th grade teacher and a positive factor in my life. Thank you.

  • anonymous posted at 3:26 pm on Tue, Dec 8, 2009.

    anonymous Posts: 0

    Congrats on your selection. As a 1970 product of Halifax Couunty School System, I know it can work. Community, help her as it did during my tenure in school there. Just look at the products of Halifax schools here in Durham, and you will immediately know-yes-it can produce.

  • anonymous posted at 9:41 am on Tue, Dec 8, 2009.

    anonymous Posts: 0

    Good luck. I truly hope the children of Halifax County are and will remain your highest priority

  • anonymous posted at 9:21 am on Tue, Dec 8, 2009.

    anonymous Posts: 0

    It doesn't take a brain to make a selection of her caliber to a most important role in the county. I do not know Dr. Frederick but I'm sure she is well qualified and more eager to work with local people than many from out-of-area.Congratulations, Dr. Frederick, and Halifax County Board of Education. You make me proud to be a native of the county!


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