Clark County School District Superintendent Jesus Jara on Monday introduced the members of his new streamlined leadership structure that he says will save up to $1.5 million a year and enable him to more consistently implement his goals across the massive organization.
Six new leaders in the Clark County School District will serve under the direction of three regional superintendents.
Matt Kelly Elementary Principal Alaina Criner and Ann Hembrook, a Orlando Public Schools middle-school principal, will serve Region 1, led by Grant Hanevold, who previously served as an associate superintendent. The region encompasses North Las Vegas, Indian Springs, Moapa Valley and Mesquite.
Current school associate superintendent Lorna James-Cervantes and Samuel Scavella, a high school principal in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, will work in Region 2. That area — led by Region Superintendent Debbie Brockett, formerly principal of Las Vegas High School and Keller Middle School — includes Summerlin, Blue Diamond, Goodsprings and Sandy Valley.
Clark High School Principal Jill Pendleton and Rowe Elementary Principal Dustin Mancl will report to Region 3 Superintendent Karla Loria, who will oversee Henderson, Boulder City, Searchlight, Laughlin and East Las Vegas.
A seventh school associate superintendent, Deanna Jaskolski, will oversee four special schools.
Salaries for region superintendents range from $102,600 to $137,472, according to the district. Salaries for school associate superintendents range from $97,704 to $130,872.
The move reduces the number of the associate superintendents by nearly half from the current 13.
“I’m proud to announce that we have top talent in CCSD and I welcome them to the team,” Jara said. “… I believe very strongly and I’m very confident in the team that stands here with me today.”
That means the district is in violation of state law, which mandates that each associate superintendent must oversee no more than 25 schools each. That means the district would need 15 positions.
But Jara has been working with the state Department of Education and appears to have its buy-in to eliminate that requirement, part of the 2015 law that mandated a reorganization of the district.
“I think when we get into the number of 25 to one as it was arbitrarily selected, I think this is the best way to run the organization,” Jara said.
Jara said he’s working with Sen. Mo Denis, D-Las Vegas, on a bill to legislatively change the requirement.
The remaining associate superintendents who were not chosen for a position in the new Teaching and Learning division may be moved to vacant positions elsewhere.
The move is estimated to save up to $1.5 million.
“But I want to also be very clear that this was not about cost savings,” Jara said. “This was really around the work around our strategic plan.”
Jara also announced Celese Rayford, currently an associate superintendent, will serve as the new assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, a post previously held by Jesse Welsh.