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Hillsborough names Van Ayres permanent school superintendent

 Van Ayres sitting down and smiling
Hillsborough County Schools
Van Ayres smiles after the Hillsborough County School Board selected him to be interim superintendent beginning July 15, 2023. He was named permanent on Nov. 2.

He had served on an interim basis following the resignation of Addison Davis.

Van Ayres will officially take over as Hillsborough school superintendent.

The Hillsborough County School Board voted unanimously Thursday to install Ayres on a permanent basis, according to a release from the school district.

Ayres had served as interim superintendent since June, following the resignation of Addison Davis.

“I am honored to be named Superintendent of Hillsborough County Public Schools," Ayres said in the release. "I look back fondly on my days in West Tampa as a Little League baseball player, up through my time at Jefferson High School, both as a student and the principal, and now as the leader of this great school district."

Ayres is a Jefferson High School graduate and joined the Hillsborough school system as a teacher at Blake High in 1997. He returned to Jefferson as principal in 2012.

Ayres was named deputy superintendent in 2015, and served in that role before replacing Davis.

"This has been my second home for my entire life, and I thank the School Board for putting their trust in my leadership," Ayres said in the release. "Today’s appointment is not just about me; it is about the 24,000 employees in this district who come to work every day with one goal in mind — to give our students every educational opportunity to succeed in school and ultimately in life.”

In the release, the school board credited Ayres for his efforts in negotiating salary increase for teachers, administrators, and support staff, along with coordinating the opening of 10 schools as storm shelters following Hurricane Idalia.

They also say Ayres "selected the most culturally diverse executive team in district history — individuals who have a track record for student success, launching accelerated programs, and bringing innovative ideas to the district." according to the release.

Ayres' contract is for four years. Financial terms were not announced, but Ayres was earning $310,000 a year as interim superintendent — the same salary as Davis.

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