You may not know this, but the length of the average superintendency nationwide is just three years. And the length of the average school board member term nationally is just four years. But, in Long Beach, CA, the average term of the superintendent is eight years and the average school board member’s term is 10 years. These are amazing numbers considering the assault educational leaders around the country are experiencing.
What’s Long Beach Unified School District doing differently? The third largest school district in California has the kind of stability and continuity most school systems only dream about, despite grappling with the same kinds of budget cuts as many other school districts.
In 2008, Long Beach was forced to lay off 10% of its staff for the first time in history. Normally, a RIF (Reduction in Force) like that is a surefire way to alter the positive momentum in a district. But not in Long Beach. Thanks to strong leadership, stability and the public’s trust in superintendent Chris Steinhauser, Long Beach will continue to be the envy of urban school districts nationwide. Their list of district awards and recognition reads like the accomplishments of an all-star athlete: http://www.lbschools.net/District/didyouknow.cfm.
I look forward to learning more in the coming months about this amazing community and school system. Are you looking for innovative ideas to boost district activity? Let us know!
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