Friday, September 20, 2013

Area superintendents renew focus on school leadership, instructional support

When Supt. Cindy Marten reorganized the district to enhance the focus on teaching and learning and leadership development, it included a shift in the roles of the six area superintendents.

The area superintendents will be spending more time on their school campuses, in classrooms and supporting principals as they ensure quality teaching and learning at their sites. This renewed focus closely aligns with district's 2020 Vision to create quality schools in every neighborhood

Instructional Support The area superintendents hit the ground running this summer, starting with the responsibility of hiring 40 new principals at school campuses. This process included working with parents and school communities to identify what qualities were important for the new principals to possess. By the first day of school, more than 36 principal vacancies had been filled along with more than 15 vice principal vacancies.

In addition to hiring site administrators, the area superintendents spent time making sure all principals were well-prepared for the start of the school year. In collaboration with the new Leadership Development Office, they coordinated two principal institutes, three operational meetings, several area principal meetings and a two-day workshop specifically for the new principals. Topics of discussion included team and relationship building, working collaboratively, looking at student data strategically, identifying strengths, and developing a broad and challenging curriculum.

"The key to creating a quality school is making sure it has a quality leader; that is the role of the principal,” said Supt. Cindy Marten. “Our principals also need leaders to lead them; that is the role of the area superintendent."

Area superintendents not only have a renewed focus this year, but many have changed the school communities they oversee. Area 3 Superintendent Julie Martel now oversees the Kearny, La Jolla, Mission Bay and University City clusters; Henry has been added to Area 4 under Marian Phelps; the Hoover and San Diego clusters have moved into Area 5 under Mitzi Merino and Area 6 now encompasses the Point Loma, Scripps Ranch and Serra clusters under direction from Gilbert Gutierrez. Shirley Wilson continues to oversee the Crawford and Lincoln clusters in Area 1.

Former principal and chief human resource officer Lamont Jackson has been appointed area 2 superintendent and will oversee the Mira Mesa and Morse high school clusters.
Read more about the area superintendents at