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Rock Hill schools have new superintendent

High school principal David Hopper gets the job

Rock Hill High School Principal David Hopper has a new job.

On Thursday night, the Rock Hill Board of Education hired him as the school system’s superintendent.

“I’m excited,” Hopper said. “It’s always been a lifelong dream of mine. I’ve worked hard for it and tried to make all the right moves and have the work ethic on a daily basis to get to this point in my career.

To become a superintendent, a person has to be licensed by the state and have a master’s degree in administration.

“You have to put work into it,” Hopper said.

He said his plans for the Rock Hill school system, after he gets in the position and “gets my feet wet,” is to enhance the academic achievements of all the students, from kindergarten to senior year.

“We want to make sure, during the whole process, they are college and career ready,” Hopper said.

Hopper has been with Rock Hill schools for eight years, with one year as the assistant principal of the middle school and seven years as the principal of the high school. Before that, he was the principal of Green High School for eight years.

He said he is still kind of numb after getting the job and has mixed emotions.

“It’s kind of bittersweet. I’m leaving a great building of teachers that I have led for several years and created great bonds with. I’m still going to be there, but in a different capacity,” he said. “But, overall, I am very, very excited.”

Hopper spent Friday doing a college tour with his child and said that his phone hadn’t stopped ringing with notices of congratulations from school faculty and friends.

“I’ve had phone calls, texts, Facebook messages. They are happy for me, but they don’t want to lose me either,” he said. “So, that’s a good feeling.”

Hopper’s first day as superintendent will be on Aug. 1.

He replaces current superintendent Wes Hairston, who is retiring after three decades with the school system, with eight years as superintendent.