Board Appoints Crystal Leach as Superintendent

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Photo credit to Sequoia Union High School District

At Wednesday’s regular Board meeting, the Board unanimously agreed to appoint Crystal Leach as District Superintendent. Leach has served as the Interim Superintendent twice in the past: first, following the departure of Mary Streshly in 2020, and recently, following Dr. Darnise Williams in December.

The decision to appoint Leach followed a search by Leadership Associates, a third-party superintendent search firm. It conducted stakeholder interviews and online surveys to highlight qualities the public sought in its next superintendent.

“The more feedback the Board received, the more evident it became that Superintendent Leach is the right person to lead our district moving forward,” Board president Richard Ginn said in a press release announcing Leach as the likely superintendent. 

In her acceptance speech, Leach said, “I am committed to fostering a positive and inclusive school environment where all students feel valued, respected, and safe. We must work to build strong relationships with our students and their families and to promote and to promote a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion.”

Leach’s contract will go into effect from April 1, 2023 and last until March 31, 2027, at a base salary of $291,979. If Leach receives a satisfactory evaluation at the end of this school year, she will be eligible for a 2.5% merit increase.

Leach will also serve as Associate Superintendent until June 20th if the District does not find someone else to fill the position sooner. The Associate Superintendent is supposed to work under the directions of the Superintendent to oversee the District’s instructional program, in charge of aspects such as student academic achievement, principal performance, and curriculum alignment.

Trustee Shawneece Stevenson said, “Crystal knows our school district’s culture and how she fits into it in order to move us forward. She already has strong working relationships with others within our district and is leaning in with our diverse community members to hear their concerns and hopes. I’m most excited about her commitment to all of our students and scholars being prepared for a global society through relationships and service.”

Trustee Sathvik Nori said, “For the nine months I worked with her as a student trustee, I saw how Crystal Leach was a fighter for our students. Her leadership, integrity, and dedication to our district know no bounds and I am excited for our work ahead.”

Sheryl Chen is a senior and Editor-in-Chief. She hopes to expand her knowledge on issues pertinent to M-A and the local community. She is also a member of M-A's debate team.

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