Announcing the New Acting Superintendent

Announcing the New Acting Superintendent
Posted on 07/26/2022
This is the image for the news article titled Announcing the New Acting SuperintendentThe Salt River Schools Education Board is happy to announce that Dr. Melody Herne has accepted the position of Acting Superintendent/Director of Education. She will begin her duties on August 3, 2022.

Salt River Schools Community Forum: Our forum was held on Tuesday, Sept. 13. If you missed it, the next Community Forum will be held Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2023. Mark your calendars! 

Those who attended our recent forum heard from all of our sites and programs, in addition to upcoming events, health and safety information, and more. Click here to view the information that was presented by Salt River Schools sites and departments on 9/13/22

Dr. Herne, who is currently the Salt River Schools data specialist, has many years of education leadership experience. In the past, Dr. Herne has served as the Arizona Department of Education Research and Statistical Analyst Data Driven Accountability Manager; she has also served as a principal, assistant principal, instructional specialist, and teacher.

The Education Board is confident of her skills and her ability to continue moving our Division forward. Please help Salt River Schools welcome Dr. Herne into this new role.

Click here to read Education Board Chair Henry Osif's announcement letter.

More about Dr. Herne:

Click here to view a larger image.   What inspired you to go into education?
My father was a career Army man, and my mother was an educator. I was raised in a home where education was not only valued, but expected. Additionally, I had multiple undergraduate professors who made learning relatable and fun, which steered me toward a career in education so that I might also help spark a love for learning in young people.

How long have you been involved with education?
This is my 27th year working in public education. I always call myself an educator, no matter the actual title of my role/position. I’ve done everything from activities to athletics to discipline. I have worn many educator hats, including teacher, principal, curriculum developer, math instructional specialist, and Research Statistical Analyst Data Driven Initiatives Manager—my longest title ever! For the last five years, I have served as the Education Data Specialist at Salt River Schools, and I will continue doing that work in addition to stepping in as Acting Superintendent.

As the Education Data Specialist, I handle all things data, accountability, and assessments. For example, I analyze data generated from the various assessments our students take throughout the year, such as NWEA, BIE math and science, WIDA, AzSCI, ACT, etc. These assessments help educators create individualized student learning and progress goals, as well as help schools identify areas of instructional need. There are also state and federal accountability measures we have to meet, such as the BIE Agency Plan and the Arizona A-F letter grade system, and it’s my responsibility to inform stakeholders of how our schools are impacted by student data. I’m also the district test coordinator. I ensure our schools are in compliance with federal and state assessment mandates.

What are your goals as the Acting Superintendent for Salt River Schools?
While the Superintendent wears many hats, ultimately, this person is the overall instructional leader. One of my goals as Acting Superintendent will be to focus on the teaching/learning cycle and making sure we are meeting students where they are and helping them grow in their education journey. I am also excited to partner with families, staff, and other stakeholders to examine and update the Salt River Schools Strategic Plan.

Is there a certain unique takeaway you have experience from being with SRPMIC?
The biggest takeaway I have experienced is that of family. Salt River Schools is very bonded. We watch students matriculate through our schools, we empower families with wraparound services, we cheer as former students become employed at Salt River Schools, and we rally around one another through all circumstances. It is truly a family. I value this special side of Salt River Schools.  
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