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Elementary and Primary Education
Houston Independent School District
News Release
Thursday, August 17, 2017

Superintendent Richard Carranza announces changes

Superintendent Richard Carranza is excited to announce several new leadership appointments and a restructuring of our Schools Office, improvements that are part of a larger effort to better meet the needs of our students, especially in our historically underserved schools.

HISD welcomes three new Chief School Officers, all of whom have extensive school-based experience and have served as principals, assistant principals, and school support officers.  They will join Chief School Officers Dr. Jorge L. Arredondo (East), Ms. Julia Dimmitt (North), and Dr. Steven Gutierrez (Northwest, and will report to Chief Academic Officer Dr. Grenita Lathan to better align management of the schools with curriculum and instruction.  In order to better focus on our 10 most intensive schools, Superintendent Carranza has organized them under one chief school officer, and they will be called the Superintendent’s Schools.  In addition, all the other Achieve 180 schools will be organized under their own chief school officer.  All chief school officers will reporter to Dr. Lathan.  Dr. Sam Sarabia, Deputy Superintendent, will be responsible for coordinating and aligning critical district functions, processes, and special projects that encompass multiple divisions.

Rebecca Brown will serve as chief school officer of the West Area. Dr. Brown has served as a School Support Officer assigned to the Milby High School feeder pattern in the district’s East Area since July 2015.  Under Brown’s leadership, four schools came out of “improvement required” status with TEA: Gallegos Elementary, McReynolds and Fondren Middle Schools, and Milby High School.  Before joining HISD, she worked in Aldine ISD for 23 years as a teacher, instructional specialist, assistant principal, and principal. Dr. Brown earned her bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies from the University of Houston and a master’s degree and doctoral degree in education administration from Prairie View A&M University.  

Nicole Moore will serve as Chief School Officer of the South Area. Ms. Moore has been with HISD for 24 years, most recently as a School Support Officer in the district’s South Area since 2013.  During her tenure, schools under her leadership experienced increases in math, science, and reading STAAR scores.  She previously served as principal of Key Middle School and oversaw significant growth in student achievement for three consecutive years.  That growth included Key’s exit from “improvement required” after her first year.  During her tenure at Key, she was named HISD Middle School Principal of the Year in 2013. Prior to becoming a middle school principal, Ms. Moore was the principal of Harris Elementary School. Ms. Moore earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Rusk College in Mississippi.  She earned a master’s degree from Mississippi State University.

Yolanda Rodríguez will serve as Chief School Officer of the Superintendent’s Schools, focusing on the 10 campuses that have remained on the state’s “improvement required” list for five or more years.  She comes to her new role after two years as a School Support Officer.  Under her leadership, eight schools came out of “improvement required” status: Codwell, Foster, Petersen, Montgomery, Milne, Cook, Kashmere Gardens Elementary Schools, and Key Middle School.  Rodríguez is a proud graduate of Northside High School and a 23-year veteran of Team HISD. She started her teaching career at Roosevelt Elementary School. She worked as an instructional coordinator and assistant principal there before moving to De Zavala Elementary School to be principal in 2010. Under her leadership, De Zavala earned exemplary status from the TEA in 2011. Ms. Rodríguez earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Houston.

In addition, Dr. Erick Pruitt will serve as chief school officer of Achieve 180. Dr. Pruitt previously served as Chief School Officer of the South Area. He began his education career as a teacher at Woodlawn Community School in the Chicago Public Schools, and then served as a New Leaders resident principal, contract principal, and deputy chief of schools. Dr. Pruitt served in the East Area Schools Office as a school support officer, supporting the schools in the Wheatley feeder pattern. Throughout Dr. Pruitt’s career, he has maintained a focus on cultivating school leadership, improving teacher practice, and establishing productive relationships to build sustainable schools that improve student success. Dr. Pruitt earned his bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Purdue University, a master’s degree from Loyola University Chicago, and doctoral degree from National Louis University.

They will join Chief School Officers Dr. Jorge L. Arredondo (East), Ms. Julia Dimmitt (North), and Dr. Steven Gutierrez (Northwest). All seven chief school officers will report to Chief Academic Officer Dr. Grenita Lathan in order to better align management of the schools with curriculum and instruction.

Three members of Team HISD will serve as assistant superintendents for the district.  Dr. Rolando “Rudy” Trevino will serve as Assistant Superintendent of Wraparound Services. Dr. Matilda “Maty” Orozco will serve as Assistant Superintendent of Technology. Dr. Jocelyn Mouton will serve as Assistant Superintendent of Academics.

All of the appointments are effective immediately.

While more of our district’s schools met tougher accountability standards under TEA results released this week and 33 schools received distinctions, there is still work to be done.  These changes will help us ensure that every child at “Improvement Required” campuses succeed.




Ocean Star
Remembering Jim Guidry


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