Tobin reassigns principal positions

Changes effective July 1
Jul. 01, 2013 @ 02:51 PM

Three of the four Thomasville City Schools will be under new leadership this upcoming school year.  Although, the faces won't exactly be all that new.

In one of his final moves as superintendent, Keith Tobin decided leadership changes were needed at Liberty Drive Elementary, Thomasville Middle School and the Alternative Learning Center. Starting July 1, Benjie Brown is the new principal at  Thomasville Middle, with its former principal Matthew Pugh moving to the Alternative Learning Center. Liz Snyder returns as principal to Liberty Drive, where she served as Brown's assistant before going to the Alternative Learning Center.

"I felt it was a change we needed to make," Tobin said. "Sometimes you need a change of scenery and I think it's good for all three of them to get a new experience. They are all quality people and I wanted to make sure we were maximizing what we could at each school. New folks in new leadership I felt would help all three schools."

Tobin said 10 and a quarter positions were cut due to the budget with four positions coming at Thomasville Middle. Tobin elected to make a change there because he felt Brown had a good plan on how to work with the cuts.

"Benjie has done a great job at Liberty Drive and we wanted to move folks around to see if we could get that same movement out of the middle school," said Tobin. "We had to cut some teachers there and in doing so the schedule had to change and Benjie was able to come up an idea I think is going to work well there. i think the moves are going to help all three schools."

Cuts were achieved through attrition and retirement without any teachers losing their jobs. The four eliminated jobs at Thomasville Middle included two language arts positions, a guidance counselor and a math teacher who was transferred to Liberty Drive. 

Snyder proved an easy choice to succeed Brown at Liberty Drive, where she was assistant principal for several years. Tobin said Pugh's expertise in instruction and academics is what the school system is looking for in the principal at the ALC.

"Mr. Tobin has made changes in school personnel from time to time and as with past changes, we feel that this change is in the best interest of the students," said  Board of Education member Crystal Hodges.

Tobin retired effective July 1. Board members named Georgia Marshall, the system’s chief administrative officer, as interim superintendent June 27 as the search for Tobin's replacement continues.

Staff Writer Eliot Duke can be reached at 888-3578, or