Waco: New WISD superintendent takes measure of the district

Less than a week into the job, Dr. Susan Kincannon says she’s been touring Waco ISD schools and meeting the staff. (Photo by Megan Vanselow)
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) Less than a week into the job, Dr. Susan Kincannon says she’s been touring Waco ISD schools and meeting the staff.

The Waco School Board voted to hire Kincannon as the district's next superintendent in August.

Her contract began on Sept. 5 and as she adjusts to a new area, she’s starting to evaluate the district’s needs.

Kincannon says one of the biggest issues she sees facing the district is teacher retention.

“Some areas for growth one is in relation to teacher recruitment and retention there are about 200 new teachers to Waco ISD this year. Of those, over 100 are first year teachers,” Kincannon said Tuesday.

“I want to engage the staff in some processes for creating solutions to some of the problems that we’re facing such as teacher retention,” she said.

She says dated facilities are her other priority.

“There's a sharp difference between facilities at University High School. It’s a newer high school, but Waco High School is aging,” Kincannon said.

Still evaluating the districts model, she says she’ll eventually formulate a plan with input from teachers and staff.

“I'll be focused on school culture making sure that classrooms have what they need so that students can be successful,” she said.

Two members of the Waco School Board opposed her hiring.

“I think the common ground is the kids and we all want what's best for the kids and I think that we’ll be able to work together because of that.” Kincannon said.

Kincannon’s contract runs until June 2022.

Her predecessor, Dr. Marcus Nelson, resigned in March following a misdemeanor drug charge.

She comes to Waco ISD after a nearly 20 year career with the Belton ISD, where she says it was time for change to grow both professionally and personally.