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Addison Davis is stepping down as Hillsborough schools superintendent

Profile photo of Addison Davis speaking in a microphone
Octavio Jones
WUSF Public Media
Hillsborough County schools Superintendent Addison Davis speaks to parents Jan. 9, 2023, during a public meeting over the district's plans for redistricting.

In a letter to school board members, Davis said he is resigning as of July 14.

The largest school district in the Tampa Bay area is losing its leader.

Hillsborough County schools Superintendent Addison Davis announced he is stepping down effective July 14.

The announcement comes a day after the Sarasota County School Board chose Hillsborough Deputy Superintendent Terrence Connor as its new head of schools.

According to a news release, Davis wrote in a letter to school board Chair Nadia Combs that it is "with a conflicted heart" that he resigning after three years.

He took the job in January 2020, just as schools were switching to virtual learning during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Over the last 39 months, I have been blessed and honored to lead the seventh largest school district in the nation," Davis wrote in the letter. "During this time, this administration has worked collectively and collaboratively with the school board to obtain historic improvements in every facet of our organization.

Among the accomplishments Davis cited in the letter during his time as superintendent:

  • Leading the district through the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Improving the district's academic ranking in the state from 35th to 19th
  • Seeing the district through a $150 million financial deficit
  • Decreasing the number of historically underperforming "D" and "F" schools from 28 to 5
  • Helping the district achieve the nation's highest rating in 2022 NAEP scores for fourth-grade reading and fourth-grade math

"Rest assured that this is one of the most difficult decisions that I have ever had to make," Davis wrote. "However, I have the opportunity to return to northeast Florida where my entire family resides and build the next chapter of my career."
The letter did not specify what new role he will be assuming.

Davis was named superintendent after serving as superintendent of Clay County Public Schools — just south of Jacksonville. He was the first superintendent hired from outside the Hillsborough County School District since 1967.

This is a developing story. Stay with WUSF for updates.

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