Memphis Suburbs Courting Former Shelby County Schools Superintendent

(Memphis) When it comes to the Memphis suburbs, you could say former Shelby County School Superintendent John Aitken is one of the most sought after people to help advise the formation of possible municipal schools.

Arlington Mayor Mike Wissman says Aitken is the person they need.

“You can’t let this guy go. He was the glue that held everything together,” Wissman said.

Arlington, Lakeland, Germantown and Collierville are said to be offering contracts to Aitken as they move toward potential municipal schools next year.

“He can sit in and help us get policy established and help us get necessities we are going to need come December 1 when the school board takes office, if everything passes,” Wissman said.

Aitken served as county superintendent until March when he sought a buyout from the Unified School Board after it expressed interest in other candidates as well.

Aitken was out of town and unavailable for a comment today, but a few months ago he told News Channel 3 he wasn’t sure if he would consider a role with the municipalities.

“I guess. It’s nice to know you are wanted I guess,” Aitken said.

But as Aitken was leaving the post, many observers speculated he would have a role in the potential municipal school districts.

Unified School Board Commissioner David Pickler was away on business in Cincinnati, but he told us by phone that Aitken is the right person to advice and guide municipal schools.

“I’m not surprised in the least. John Aitken is an exceptional educational leader. I can think of no one more qualified to work with these municipalities and to give them advice and counsel to help them build a great school system,” Pickler said.

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