Superintendent Carlos Garcia announced today that he will retire from the San Francisco Unified School District in July 2012 after five years at the helm of SFUSD and 37 years in education. The SF Board of Education has entered into negotiations with Richard Carranza, Deputy Superintendent of Instruction, Innovation and Social Justice, to be his successor.
“It has been an honor and a privilege to serve this great community and work with the great educators and elected officials on our school board and in our city to make sure children come first,” said Superintendent Garcia. “Our work at SFUSD has restored my faith in the excellent opportunities that do exist in public education. School systems can stand for social justice and we can mobilize as a civil rights organization to close the achievement gap for our most underserved students. The work we have started still has a long way to go, but if the SFUSD maintains this course I have no doubt that it will achieve its mission of diminishing the power of demographics in determining student academic success.”
Board of Education commissioners lauded the superintendent for his ability to build a strong culture of collaboration focused on shared goals both within the district and between the district, the city of San Francisco and the community.
“On behalf of the board, we are sad to see Superintendent Garcia leave as we’ve made great strides under his leadership. As much as we would love for him to stay, we respect his decision to spend more time with his family,” said School Board President Norman Yee.
Mayor Ed Lee joined the school board president in thanking Garcia for his contributions to the city.
"It's been my honor and pleasure to work side by side with Superintendent Carlos Garcia in a continued cooperative spirit to make our schools and community a better place for all our students and their families," said Mayor Lee. "His bold, no nonsense, do it for the kids attitude has been a strong foundation for SFUSD and his leadership in preparing our youth for the 21st century innovation economy will leave a lasting legacy in our City."
Next Superintendent for SFUSD
Board president Yee announced that the Board of Education will enter into negotiations with Richard Carranza who has served as SFUSD’s Deputy Superintendent for Instruction, Innovation and Social Justice since 2009.
“The board carefully deliberated about this decision and decided we wanted to continue with the vision, goals and implementation plans that have started to improve our schools. Deputy Superintendent Carranza has contributed to important academic gains over the past two years. We’re looking forward to negotiating a contract so that the important work can continue,” said President Yee.
As Deputy Superintendent of Instruction, Innovation and Social Justice, Carranza oversees the district’s pre-K through 12 school area teams as well as the district’s student and family support services and academic departments. He is responsible for implementing the SFUSD strategic plan to achieve more equitable educational results for all students.
“Richard has brought so much to our district as an instructional leader, a community builder, and a father of two SFUSD students,” said Superintendent Garcia. “He is deeply committed to social justice and knows how to keep moving the district toward the goals and vision of our strategic plan.”
Carranza said he is looking forward to the opportunity to continue to serve San Francisco’s children.
“I look forward to continuing to build upon the remarkable academic achievement trajectory of the SFUSD. My family and I are proud to live in a city that values children.”
Rachel Norton shares her thoughts on Carlos Garcia's retirement:
His five-year tenure in San Francisco has been remarkably smooth for a big-city Superintendent — on average, urban superintendents quit or are fired after 3-1/2 years on the job. I would say Carlos’ major accomplishments are:
His handling of the district budget.
Refocusing district programs on the achievement gap.
Defusing the tension.
I can’t think of any reason NOT to pass the torch to Deputy Superintendent Richard Carranza, and indeed the Board has decided to begin negotiations with Mr. Carranza for the district’s top spot. While I am sure there are other qualified and interesting candidates out there, I don’t see why we should spend upwards of $100,000 to search for them (that is what a Superintendent search costs!) when we have a candidate right here who:
knows the district well;
has fully bought into Carlos’ philosophy and management style;
has demonstrated that he can work well with the current board.