Albemarle County Public Schools Welcomes Chad Ratliff to Human Resources; Appoints Tim Driver as Interim Principal for Community Lab School

(ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Virginia)—Albemarle County Public Schools (ACPS) has appointed Tim Driver as interim principal of the Community Lab School for the 2022-23 school year. Driver, who has served as the assistant principal at Monticello High School since 2020, succeeds Chad Ratliff, who recently announced that he will assume the role of Talent Acquisition Program Manager at ACPS.

Driver will serve as the Lab School’s interim principal for one year.

“I am very happy to announce Mr. Driver’s appointment as interim principal at the Community Lab School. Students, families and staff there will find that his breadth of knowledge of education and administration paired with his focus on serving the whole student and student choice are very much aligned not only with the Lab School’s goals but with the school division’s as a whole,” said Dr. Clare Keiser, an assistant superintendent. “We are fortunate that he will take on this role at CLS.”

Keiser said the division will begin a search process for a new principal early next year and that an important part of the search process will be providing opportunities for all CLS community members to participate. 

Driver says that his top priority at the Lab School is to focus on cultivating students’ passions and promoting student choice while maintaining the importance of innovation and individuality.

“I am very excited to work in a small setting at CLS, where I will be able to get to know the students, faculty, families and community individually. I am also eager to draw upon my experience as a guidance counselor to help students with their social-emotional learning to see them succeed and find their passions. This school places a lot of value on helping students find their passion, which means that our students really love CLS and the staff really love working there,” said Driver.

Driver has a B.S. and a M.S. in Counselor Education from Longwood University. He also has a M.Ed. in Educational Leadership from Lynchburg College. He began his career as an educator in 1995, working simultaneously as a part-time teacher and a part-time guidance counselor in Nelson County, where he went on to become an assistant principal. He came to ACPS in 2005 and has served in the role of assistant principal at three high schools, including Albemarle, Western Albemarle and, most recently, Monticello.

Ratliff holds an M.Ed. from the University of Virginia, an MBA from Virginia Tech and a B.S. from Old Dominion University. He is also is currently a doctoral student at the UVA School of Education and Human Development in curriculum and instruction focusing on educational innovation. He is co-author of Timeless Learning: How Imagination, Observation, and Zero-Based Thinking Change Schools (Jossey-Bass, 2018). He also authored the Foreward, “On Liberating Teachers”, in UVA Professor Patricia Jenning’s book Teacher Burnout Turnaround: Strategies for Empowered Educators (Norton, 2020).

Of his new role for the school division’s Human Resources Department, Ratliff said, “My time at the Community Lab School has provided me an understanding of the diverse needs of students and the critical part that teachers play in cultivating the best that all students have to offer. That made me want to address one of the biggest challenges that public schools currently face: the recruitment and retention of high-quality educators, particularly those who come from diverse backgrounds.”

Both Driver and Ratliff will begin the transition into their roles immediately, but Driver will officially begin his role at CLS on August 12.