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ACPS Announces Dr. Jesse Turner as Director of Student Services

ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (WVIR) – Albemarle County Public Schools (ACPS) welcomes a familiar face to the county, but this time in a bigger role: as director of student services.

“It was just fine,” said new director of student services, Dr. Jesse Turner.

He will officially begin his new role with CSPA on July 1st. He was previously principal of two high schools in Albemarle County.

“Of the tasks that I will have to fulfill in this role, I have done them on a lower scale, as a principal, in particular high school principal,” he explained.

At the top of his agenda: working on county school safety coaches, who will replace school resource officers, while laying the groundwork for expanded mental health efforts.

“I think they’re going to be central to what we want to try to do, because they’re really going to be school-level ambassadors for some of the mental health work,” Turner added.

The county’s anti-racism agenda is also something Turner is looking forward to working on.

“I want people to take it seriously and the county does a lot to try to address diversity and embrace diversity and this policy is part of that process,” he said.

Burley Middle School principal Kasaundra Blount says one of Turner’s specialties is building relationships with students and staff.

“Once you build that relationship, everything else will fall into place,” she said. “The position Dr. Turner now holds as Director of Student Services, when it comes to supporting students, is all about relationships.”

She looks forward to working with Turner to find ways to be proactive in schools and keep people in the classroom as much as possible.

“Just continuing to look for alternatives so we can keep our students in school and in the classroom as much as possible, while still being accountable for what they do,” Blount said.

“If kids don’t feel safe and confident and have a relationship with the adults around them, that makes them unsafe, sometimes they don’t feel safe,” Turner said.

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