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FCPS offering resources to help students, staff process death of Superintendent Manny Caulk

Published: Dec. 7, 2020 at 10:12 AM EST
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Fayette County Superintendent Manny Caulk died unexpectedly Friday.

Last Monday, he announced he was going on medical leave to focus on his health.

The district says it is ready to help faculty, staff, and students with processing Caulk’s death. Acting Superintendent Marlene Helm released this statement about Caulk’s passing:

As the FCPS Community continues to mourn the loss of Manny Caulk, our servant superintendent, our focus continues to be student-centered. While many students may not have had a personal relationship with the superintendent, we know that his sudden passing may trigger anxiety or grief for them. This response may be particularly heightened due to the COVID-19 related uncertainty with which we are all faced at this time.

For your reference, we have compiled information that we hope you will find helpful in supporting children and youth through the grieving process. There is also a collection of emotional support and self-care resources for FCPS students, parents, and school staff at this site.

Additionally, your student’s school support team of counselors, FRYSC coordinators, mental health specialists, psychologists, and social workers will continue to be available to provide your student with any support they may need as we close out this semester. You may submit a request for help from your school’s team at www.fcps.net/gethelp.

The staff of Fayette County Public Schools will continue to serve our students and families as we grieve the loss of our leader. It is our hope that this great loss will serve as a catalyst for unity and renewed focus on our mission.

Caulk’s family has asked school leaders not to give interviews regarding his death at this time. They say Manny wanted people to focus on the district and not on him.

“We are thankful to the Caulk family. They shared Manny with us. We are better because we knew him. Our community has lost a huge advocate for our children and a champion for educators. Farewell, partner,” said Stephanie Spires, chairwoman with the Fayette Co. Board of Education.

The Fayette County School Board met briefly Monday afternoon. They postponed original items on the agenda to next week, and instead held a moment of silence for Caulk.

“Even in his final weeks and days he was working to ensure his colleagues were updated and still knew what work needed to be complete and what projects he still wanted to see completed,” Spires said.

The board plans to release more information about honor services for manny caulk soon.

“He accomplished a lot in a short time here in Fayette County, but he left a lot of work for us to do,” Spires said.

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