New Oldham County superintendent Jason Radford stresses the importance of school culture

A man in a suit stands in the middle of a group of people while talking.
Jason Radford, center, is welcomed as the new superintendent by attendees of the Oldham County board meeting on June 14, 2021. Radford previously served as the assistant superintendent with Boone County Schools, where he led the Office of School and System Improvement.
Submitted photo, June 14, 2021

Editor’s Note: This is the seventh of a series of stories Kentucky Teacher is running about new superintendents for the 2021-2022 school year.

By Shelby Stills

Jason Radford is on a new educational journey, beginning his tenure as the new Oldham County superintendent July 1. He replaces Greg Schultz, who retired June 30, following five years at Oldham County and a total of 31 years in education.

Radford previously served as the assistant superintendent with Boone County Schools, where he led the Office of School and System Improvement. He has held various roles in the education sector, including Educational Recovery leader at Newport High School (Newport Independent), National School Leadership coach, and the Title I district manager for the Kentucky Department of Education.

He also previously served as a teacher, assistant principal and principal in Scott County.

Radford holds a bachelor’s in health and physical education/fitness from Campbellsville University, a master’s in secondary education and teaching from Georgetown College, a Rank 1 and certifications in educational leadership and administration from Eastern Kentucky University, and a doctor of education from Morehead State University.

Originally from Burkesville, Radford said he comes from a long line of educators who fueled his passion for learning and teaching.

“I love kids and I care about people. Being an educator is about trying to ensure that every student achieves at their highest level and has the best experience,” he said.

Looking back through his career, Radford says the biggest challenge he has faced is “ensuring that we recruit and retain the best teachers for every student.” But he admits, it has prepared him for his next role, and he plans to work hard to make sure he provides the best for all students in the Oldham County schools.

However, Radford said that one of the biggest obstacles Kentucky schools are facing right now is getting students back in the classroom following the COVID shutdown and providing a supportive environment.

“We want to support every student and meet every student’s needs,” he said.

When he’s not working, he enjoys spending time with his wife, a fellow teacher, and three children. He and his family love traveling, being outside and attending sporting events together.

As for this upcoming school year, Radford said his primary goal in Oldham County is to “listen, learn and to connect with teachers, leaders and the community.”