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Tommy Kranz tapped to lead Richmond Schools — for now

RICHMOND, Va. — Tommy Kranz will serve as interim superintendent for Richmond Public Schools when Dr. Dana Bedden steps down at the end of the school year.

Kranz is currently the Assistant Superintendent for Support Services.

He was previously Chief Financial Officer of Hamilton County Schools in Chattanooga, Tennessee and Chief of Educational Support Services at Okaloosa Schools in Fort Walton Beach, Florida, according to his online bio.

Earlier this year, the Richmond School Board announced Bedden would leave his job — which he began in 2014 — with two years left on his contract.

His last day is June 30.

Some teachers, parents, and city leaders had been critical of the way the Richmond School Board handled Bedden’s sudden departure.

School Board members have said they were ready to go in a different direction, but have not yet said what factors led to the decision.

School board member Jonathan Young said that he didn’t feel there was enough autonomy given to teachers and principals under Bedden’s leadership.

He also said both sides (Bedden and the Richmond School Board) agreed not to defame each other when pushed about why the board had not directly explained why Dr. Bedden was let go.

Bedden will receive nearly $300,000 in severance when he leaves his post at the end of June.

The School Board planned to work with a search firm to find the next Superintendent.

According to an agenda handed out at a recent Richmond School Board meeting, the search firm to hire Bedden’s replacement won’t be hired until August 1.

Last time Richmond Schools used search firm it cost around $56,000. Young said he expected this go around it would be around the same price.