The possible appointment is on the agenda for this Tuesday’s SAUSD School Board meeting, available here, as item #13: Appointment of SAUSD Superintendent of Schools and Approval of Employment Agreement.
Riverside Unified School District Superintendent Rick Miller said he was in discussions with Santa Ana Unified regarding the open position, according to the O.C. Register. The SAUSD has not announced any other Superintendent candidates to the media or the public.
Miller met with Riverside school board members behind closed doors for two hours on Tuesday, Sep. 10, 2013, according to the Press Enterprise. He said afterward that he has not received a formal offer from Santa Ana or submitted a resignation to Riverside.
Here is additional information about Miller, courtesy of the Press Enterprise:
Miller, 64, has about 40 years of experience as a school administrator and was hired in November 2008 to lead Riverside’s district of 42,000 students. He came to Riverside from Oxnard schools, a 15,000-student district in Ventura County. Santa Ana Unified has 56,000 students.
When he started the Riverside job in January 2009, Miller vowed to collaborate with district employees and improve communication with them and the community.
He guided the district through multiple rounds of state budget cuts, and he pushed to bring technology into schools, such as the move to replace traditional textbooks with iPads.
On Tuesday, he said it would be premature to talk about his accomplishments in Riverside, but he praised district employees and credited teachers, classified staff, principals and others for the district’s progress.
“I get to stand in front of the parade and take the bow, so to speak, but the people that are actually doing the work are the folks back over there,” he said. “We’ve got great people, we’ve gone through extraordinarily difficult times, and they all have done a great job.”
Riverside is California’s 15th largest district, with 43 schools and a $316 million budget. Santa Ana schools’ website says the district is the sixth largest, has 61 schools and a budget of $499.7 million.
Whoever they hire will inherit a troubled school district with an ongoing brain drain of top students to schools in neighboring districts, such as Tustin and Irvine; budget issues; problems controlling students; and test results that have slipped over the past year – even at the district’s top fundamental schools.
The SAUSD is also apparently negotiating a new contract with their teachers and classified employees. This is item #10 on the meeting agenda: Acknowledgement of Receipt of Initial Bargaining Proposals for Santa Ana Unified School District, Santa Ana Educators’ Association, and California School Employees Association, Chapter 41.
The SAUSD School Board meeting will be held on Tuesday, Sep. 24, 2013, at the District Headquarters, at 1601 East Chestnut Ave., in Santa Ana, at 6 pm.