After serving as superintendent of the Pine Bluff School District for nearly two years, Jeremy Owoh will resign on June 30, 2020. In a letter to staff obtained by The Commercial, Owoh mentioned the decision to leave left him feeling “bittersweet.”

After serving as superintendent of the Pine Bluff School District for nearly two years, Jeremy Owoh will resign on June 30, 2020. In a letter to staff obtained by The Commercial, Owoh mentioned the decision to leave left him feeling “bittersweet.”

“It was not an easy decision to make, because over the past 21 months I have grown to know many of you as friends and valued colleagues,” he wrote. “I appreciate and respect each of you. It has truly been a privilege to work with and serve you as your superintendent.”

The commissioner of the Arkansas Department of Education, Johnny Key, appointed Owoh to his position back in September 2018. The Arkansas Board of Education removed the interim president, Monica McMurry, and the district’s school board was dissolved. At the time of his appointment, the state had taken over the fiscally distressed district.

“As I finish my tenure, I am confident in knowing that our students are doing better academically and that our district is headed towards fiscal stability,” he wrote. “I am confident in knowing that it will continue, because I have seen the passion that many of you have for educating our scholars. We have made significant strides in reaching our academic goals in literacy and mathematics, because we have worked together and focused on our scholars’ needs.”

Prior to becoming the superintendent in Pine Bluff, he had roles across the state including, but not limited to assistant commissioner of the Arkansas Department of Education and as assistant superintendent for the Jacksonville/North Pulaski School District. In his letter, he stated he was honored to work in a district with countless things taking place to better not only students, but also its staff.

“There are many positive things that are in the pipeline for the Pine Bluff School District, such as a new building project, a list of improvements across other campuses of our district [and] a new fleet of buses that are equipped with Wi-Fi,” he wrote. “For all this and much, much more, I thank secretary Johnny Key and I thank all of you for the opportunity to serve.”

Closing out his goodbye’s to the staff, Owoh praised their continued efforts to “recognize and minister” to the needs of students in the district by paying close attention to the “social and emotional aspects of their lives.”

“I will prepare to leave the district with the same mindset and outlook that I had when I started--- full of gratitude for the opportunity to serve and optimistic of the great work that will come from our scholars each day with the support and guidance of distinguished educators and supportive community members,” he wrote. “Thank you all for the gift of allowing me to be part of you.”

This is a developing story.