The Royse City Independent School District Board of Trustees’ unanimous vote to select Kevin Worthy as superintendent sparked applause and a standing ovation from the audience at the board’s March 27 special meeting.

Worthy heard more positive response later from the audience, mostly school employees, when he ended a brief speech with the comment, “I look forward to being a Royse City Bulldog.”

Worthy was named lone finalist for the superintendent position during a March 5 meeting. A 21-day waiting period was required before the board could consider hiring him.

After a brief executive session at the March 27 special meeting, board president Don Palmer said Worthy had visited Royse City a couple of times during the 21-day period.

Palmer added that a Royse City group also visited Gunter, where Worthy has spent his entire 18-year education career — the last four as superintendent. The group talked to some Gunter residents, Palmer said, “just to be completely thorough about things.”

“I’m just thrilled to death,” the 41-year-old Worthy said after the board’s vote.

Worthy talked about the community residents he had met already. He also mentioned the “quality staff” at RCISD.

“I look forward to being a part of that team,” Worthy said. “I use the word ‘team’ because really it is. That’s basically what we have, a team, and I look forward to being a part of that.

“I look forward to taking it to another level and continuing the vision that Royse City has. I’m ready to go to work. I’m excited.”

Worthy said his first day on the job in Royse City will be May 7, about a month before current Superintendent Randy Hancock’s retirement will become effective.

In April, Worthy said, he will spend as much time as possible in Royse City. Worthy said he wants to visit campuses, meet kids, teachers and “continue to get to know each and every one of you and build relationships.”

Strong relationships, he said, are an important part of any organization.

“Any organization has to have strong relationships,” he said. “I see these things already in place with what Mr. Hancock has done. I want to carry that torch and do some wonderful things here. I’m excited to be a part of it.”

He pointed out there will be some challenges along the way.

“I know it’s not always going to be rosy, but together, we will make a difference,” Worthy said.

One of the school district’s strengths that attracted him to Royse City, he said, “is your love and passion for kids.”

“It’s all about kids,” he added. “It’s 100 percent about kids. What we do every single day is about kids. In order to do that, in order to accomplish that goal, we’ll work together. We’ll keep moving on, getting that vision in front of us, striving for excellence.”

Worthy returned to Royse City Thursday to meet with staff members and start visiting schools. He also planned to attend the school board’s regular meeting that was held Tuesday night.

An informal reception honoring Worthy will be held from 3 to 4 p.m. April 17 at Texas Leadership Bank, 121 W. Interstate 30, Royse City.

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