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Parma City Schools

Superintendent  |  August 2010 - July 2015

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Parma City Schools District Profile

Parma, Ohio

Parma City School District (PCSD) is a first ring school district comprised of students from the cities of Parma (the 6th largest city in the state), Parma Heights and Seven Hills. The PCSD serves approximately 11,500 culturally diverse students with a poverty rate of approximately 50%. The district earned an Excellent rating by the Ohio Department of Education for three years. The PCSD Team included 62 administrators, 962 licensed professionals and 739 classified staff.

Recreating the District

• Passed the largest operating levy in the history of the school district after seven straight failures

• Engaged the community in a consolidation process in which stakeholders defined priorities for the future of the school district. Following research and best practices, these efforts resulted in the following:

  • Implemented an authentic STEM program for grades K-12

  • Redesigned the special education program to assure least restrictive environment by serving

    students in their home schools.

  • Initiated a 1:1 technology plan for grades K-12

  • Resolved 33 special education citations identified by the state

  • Reconfigured grade levels of all buildings

  • Restructured the school day for grades K – 8

  • Created a schedule that allows all students to have the potential to earn 2.75 credits before

    entering high school

  • Offered world languages in grades 5-8, a first for the district

  • Implemented an authentic middle school concept

  • Initiated a plan to address the gaps in equal access to our curriculum 

    for all students

  • Cloed four school buildings while honoring their history and impact on our community

Gathering and responding to data and stakeholder input

  • Collaborated with the State Support Team to perform an Equity Audit of the district

  • Created a data management team through grant funding to help teachers become more comfortable with understanding and using data to determine student needs, align instruction and identify areas of improvement

  • Solicited input from all stakeholders through the use of surveys, polling, focus groups and in-depth interviews to assess the consolidation plan

Improving Communication

• Represented Ohio superintendents in Washington DC by meeting with members of Congress
• Created a Public Relations Department charged with providing transparent communication which

accomplished the following:

  • Monthly open-door sessions, providing students, staff and community members with the opportunity to meet without an appointment any time during the school day

  • Monthly Talk-of-the-Town sessions throughout the community to hear concerns and share updates with the public in a large group session

  • Visited buildings and met with staff during their scheduled lunch periods to stay updated on the needs and concerns within the schools

  • Prepared a weekly e-newsletter with district and building updates for 12,000 community leaders

• Mailed a monthly newsletter with district updates to residents in partnership with the Plain Dealer

• Served on the Parma Education Foundation, Parma Area Chamber of Commerce, the Rotary and the Community/Business/School Partnership (C/B/S)

Responding to District Academic Needs

  • Restructured and downsized central office to invest in teaching and learning

  • Redesigned the gifted and talented program, identifying more students and offering vertical and

  • horizontal growth opportunities to them

  • Reprioritized the district budget to create a plan that allows for a 1:1 technology plan providing every teacher with a MacBook, students in K-2 with an iPad mini, students in grades 3-7 with an iPad, and students in grades 9-12 with a MacBook

  • Collaborated with the teachers’ union to develop and earn a Race to the Top (RttT) grant that afforded the opportunity to make necessary focused changes

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