Boyle experience was positive
Thomas said he has been “very blessed” to be at Boyle High.
“The school has great kids, great parents and great teachers and staff,” he said. “I have been very fortunate to have been able to call the school my workplace and the community my home these last four years.”
Boyle County Assistant Superintendent David Young said he regrets Thomas’ departure and commended him on his service.
“Elmer has been an excellent principal,” he said. “He has done tremendous things for the high school. We’ve seen a lot of growth academically and in many other ways. His tenure has been a very successful one.”
Young said central office has posted the opening for a new principal at the high school on its website and on the Kentucky Department of Education website. The posting will be for 30 days, he said.
“The high school’s site-based council will undergo training in the selection process, and that process will begin with accepting and screening applications, conducting interviews and then making a decision,” he said.
Young said faculty, staff and parents are invited to give input to the council and central office on “what qualities, talents, skills and experience they want to see in the next principal.”
In the meantime, the council and central office soon will select a person to oversee the day-to-day operations at the high school, Young said. The two assistant principals — Jennifer Brogle and Will Begley — also will be involved with those operations, he said.
“An interim person may be selected or someone from central office may handle the day-to-day business,” he said.
Proud of school's accomplishments
Thomas, who replaced Kerry Anness as Boyle principal, said he was both honored to be able to serve as the school’s principal and proud of the achievements of faculty and students during his tenure.
“In the e-mail I sent to the faculty announcing my decision to leave for Madison Central, I said I couldn’t be more proud of them and what they had done during my time here,” he said. “Together, we helped change the culture at the high school by setting high academic and extracurricular expectations and making every effort to meet them.”
Among the expectations that have been met, Thomas cited a 10-point increase in CATS scores and an improvement in the school’s ACT average score from 18 two years ago to 20.5.
“I am particularly pleased with the improvement in the ACT scores, not just the overall average but in every area of the test,” he said. “They (scores) went through the roof in a short amount of time.”
Thomas said students and their coaches and faculty sponsors also excelled in extracurricular activities over the last years.
“In football and other sports and also in band competitions, just to name a couple of examples, our extracurricular program has been outstanding,” he said.
Thomas also cited as another accomplishment his school’s involvement with programs that link the classroom to the workplace, including those overseen by Steve Rinehart and his Danville-Boyle County Chamber of Commerce school-to-work committee that has attempted to build relationships between local schools and businesses and industries.
Thomas said he has been involved in several community organizations, including Heart of Kentucky United Way and Leadership Boyle County.
Thomas’ wife, Marla Thomas, has been a teacher at Boyle County Middle School, while their children have been students in the Boyle system. Their daughter Lauren, 13, has been a student at the middle school and their son Matthew, 9, has been a student at Woodlawn Elementary School.
Thomas, a native of Estill County, came to Boyle after serving two years as assistant principal at Campbell County High School. Prior to that, he spent the eight years as a Spanish teacher at Madison Central and, before that, six years as a Spanish teacher at Berea High School. The 1984 graduate of Estill County High School received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Spanish and his Rank I in principalship at Eastern Kentucky University.