Paul Hewitt Named Fayetteville Schools Superintendent

After three months of searching for a new superintendent, the School Board on Tuesday named Paul Hewitt as the new Fayetteville School District superintendent.

Paul Hewitt is a long time educator, bringing 35 years of experience in public education to his new role as superintendent.

“This has been my life,” said Hewitt. “It’s been my career. I can bring that experience and knowledge to help this school district move forward.”

Hewitt has worked at the University of Arkansas since 2007.  He has also held several other jobs in the education field, including spending 17 years as a superintendent.

“I am familiar with the community here,” Hewitt said. “I am familiar with public education in Fayetteville and Arkansas. This was just an opportunity to serve.”

It’s that kind of experience School Board President Tim Hudson said made Hewitt an ideal candidate for the job.

“As our search process unfolded it turned out there was an opportunity, and he said that he would be willing to consider it and think about it,” he said. “By the tome the board members had the chance to talk to him, I think we all agreed he was going to be a great fit for us.”

Hudson believes Hewitt will take education to the next level while also strengthening the school district’s relationship with the U of A.

“I think he will help us make a real strong bridge there,” he said. “With him being a faculty member and an associate professor there, he has that connection for us.”

Hewitt plans to focus on collaboration and communication as he starts his new role.

“It’s a very good school district, so I want to get in and visit with people and let them tell me where they think the district should go,” he said.

While Hewitt does not officially begin his duties until July, he can not wait to begin.

“I wouldn’t have thrown my name in the ring if this wasn’t something I was terribly excited about, so yes I am looking forward to it,” he said.

Hewitt will begin his duties on July 1st. His transition with current Superintendent Vicki Thomas will begin immediately.

Hewitt was not among the 17 candidates who applied for the job by the school district’s declared deadline. The school district sent out public notices as it was interviewing candidates, but never noted interviewing Hewitt.

9 comments

  • Mark Smith

    Nepotism at it’s finest. Lets see the district disclosed other applicants fro other districts putting them in a tenable position with their existing districts all the while already having made their decision. Apparently, ethics is not part of the Districts curriculum.

  • mark

    btw the original poster above (mark smith) is NOT the mark smith who formerly taught in the district. one of the hazards of a common name :-)

  • mark

    hey mark no need for apology! just to clear any confusion for those who know me in district….actually i was also disappointed in their candidate selection, lets hope he is up for the the job :-)

  • Scott

    Hewitt stated in article he would be focusing on collaboration and communication. Seems like he could start with the board

  • UofA Co-worker/Piss Ant

    What a horrible hire!!! You will all be sorry!!! I’ve worked with this guy for only a few years now. He is disrespectful and thinks everyone should bow to him. Oh, and if you’re not a faculty member, he can shit on you if he wants. Staff is considered, in Paul’s eyes, less of an employee & believes that they do not deserve the same respect as faculty members.

  • UofA Co-worker/Piss Ant

    Also, please consider this.

    Hewitt was not among the 17 candidates who applied for the job by the school district’s deadline last month. Tim Hudson, School Board President, is also Paul Hewitt’s friend & neighbor. As the process neared its end, Hewitt realized he wanted the job, and was still considered even though he missed the deadline. That’s just wrong. Why have a deadline? There were several other candidates that were perfectly qualified & submitted their application of interest on time, however they were passed over to hire a guy that missed the deadline. Hmmmmmmm. Already off to a great start. Stuck up looser, he is!

  • Alie - UA Staff

    As a staff member at the UA who works in Paul’s department, I can say that I think he will do a fabulous job as superintendent. Every interaction I have had with him has been professional. He also genuinely cares about his students, and I am excited to see him bring forth his positive energy in the Fayetteville Public School system. I can’t speak for other people who have written negative things about him, but I can say that whatever negativity is being thrown out against his character is unfortunate. Whether it stems from an isolated incident or just a clash in personalities, I should hope that neither of those would affect how anyone see Paul as a professional.

    For what it’s worth, my staff position is “beneath” his position, and I do a lot of paperwork for his department. He has never treated me with any less respect than what he shows to other staff members and faculty members. I don’t know him as well as others in the department, but the general consensus is that our department will be losing a valuable colleague, and Fayetteville is lucky to have him.

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