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School Board Considers New Chief Academic Officer Tonight

Published on Thursday, September 29, 2011 | 11:17 pm

The Pasadena Unified Board of Education is set to vote on the employment contract for the district’s new Chief Academic Officer in a closed door meeting Tuesday, a district official told Pasadena Now.

The official would not name the individual who has been selected for the job — and said she is not certain when that person’s name will be released, even if the contract is approved.

The meeting was originally set for this Friday but it was rescheduled for unknown reasons.

PUSD Supt. Jon Gundry underscored the important of a Chief Academic Officer to enable him to accomplish his many plans for the district. In fact, Gundry on many occasions has credited his past successes to skilled administrators who helped him carry out his vision.

“This person will be my right hand person and working with me to improve academics in the district,” Gundry said earlier.

On Tuesday, PUSD School Board vice president Ed Honowitz stressed the vital rôle played by a Chief Academic Officer in Pasadena’s school system. He described the position as being involved in all the district teaching and learning initiatives.

“[This]  is a key position interfacing with our principals in all academic initiatives,” Honowitz said. “Of course, the superintendent is also involved in all of those things. But in reality, in order for us to move forward in improving our secondary schools and moving our academic performance district wide, we have to have key people with some real expertise in that position.”

The Chief Academic Officer position became vacant after Alice Petrossian, who has served as Chief Academic Officer for the past three years, retired at the end of the last school year to serve as the new president for the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) in 2012.

The duties and responsibilities of a Chief Academic Officer are overaching to Pasadena Unified.

The Chief Academic Officer is responsible for, among other things, implementing educational activities both strategic and operational, ensuring campus compliance with state Department of Education, accreditation, regulations and policies,  and assisting in developing and managing the educational budget

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