Directors of Schools

Sara Mirabueno
Director of School Based Operations

Sara Mirabueno currently serves as the director of school based operations supporting our schools and central office around streamlining our operations to ensure equitable outcomes for all of our students. Prior to her role as director of school based operations, Sara was an elementary school principal, assistant principal and a teacher. Sara holds a master’s in Education Administration as well as her superintendent credentials from Seattle Pacific University. In addition to working for Seattle Public Schools, she also serves as an adjunct professor for the education department at Seattle Pacific University. Sara is a lifelong learner and is passionate about being a part of a school district that puts systems in place to ensure that every child has an equal chance for success.

Mike Starosky
Executive Director of Schools Pk-12

Dr. Mike Starosky believes leadership matters-specifically school leadership matters to the success and support of high-quality teaching and learning. Dr. Starosky is the executive director of schools, PK-12 who leads the learning, support, and supervision of the director of schools and principal leadership coaches.

Dr. Starosky has committed his professional life to closing opportunity gaps by creating the conditions for adults to provide high quality teaching to each and every student. Dr. Starosky leads with the belief that Seattle’s children, families, and communities are worthy of exceptional teaching and focuses his leadership and those whom he leads, to improving the conditions of adult learning to focus instructional leadership of school leaders.

Dr. Starosky founded and leads, Seattle Public Schools’ leadership development and support program, Lead Up, which recruits, selects, and retains school leaders. Under Dr. Starosky’s leadership the last five years, the Lead Up department has hired nearly 50% Leaders of Color.

Dr. Starosky was honored in 2015 with the University of Washington’s College of Education Professional Mentor Award for his outstanding leadership in mentoring and coaching of students at the University of Washington. Additionally, he has been a presenter at number national professional leadership conferences.

Dr. Starosky earned a doctorate in school leadership and policy studies from the University of Washington and is a career middle school teacher and administrator. He is a proud graduate of Seattle Public Schools having attended Whittier Elementary, Whitman Jr. High, and Ballard High School. In 1994 he began his career in SPS as a middle school teacher at Mercer Middle School, then assistant principal and principal of Whitman Middle School, and principal leadership coach. A lifelong athlete and sports fan, Dr. Starosky has refused to watch a professional basketball game again until the NBA restores and returns to Seattle its storied, beloved franchise.

Chris Carter
Director of Schools

Chris Carter is returning to SPS from his most recent experience serving as a learning improvement officer in Federal Way Public Schools. In this role, Mr. Carter supervised principals (K-12) and supported their leadership in their schools, meeting both school and district goals.

Previously, Chris worked in Seattle Public Schools for over 10 years with experience as a principal and middle school teacher. Mr. Carter is excited to return to SPS to both lead and partner in our work toward ensuring positive outcomes for all students.

Heather Eberts
Director of Schools

Heather Eberts has served the students and families of Seattle Public Schools since 2018, after serving as assistant superintendent for Eagle County Schools. Ms. Eberts has demonstrated experience with collaborative instructional leadership, data-driven practices, and commitment to racial equity. Additional prior experience includes three years as the executive director of curriculum and instruction and executive director of elementary education; she has also served as a principal, assistant principal, and classroom educator.

Heather is part of a team supporting principals’ instructional leadership as a lever to impact student learning, elevate student agency, and close opportunity gaps. Engaging with school leaders in one-on-one coaching, school learning walks, professional learning/action-research cycles, and data reviews are some of the ways Heather supports school leaders.

Heather earned a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education from the University of Central Florida and a Master of Education in educational leadership from Stetson University. Heather has conducted presentations for ASCD, Learning Forward, National Institute for Excellence in Teaching, and Coalition of Essential Schools.

Jon Halfaker
Director of Schools

Jon Halfaker has served the students and families of Seattle Public Schools since 1994. He is currently serving in his fourth year as a Director of Schools P-12/Secondary. The five years prior to this, he served as an Executive Director of Schools. Jon also served as the principal of Washington Middle School for eight years, assistant principal of Meany Middle School, house administrator at Eckstein Middle School, STAR Mentor, and as a U.S. history teacher and head soccer coach at Washington Middle School for eight years.

As a member of Directors of Schools P-12, Jon supports and evaluates principals’ instructional leadership in order to increase student achievement, increase racial equity, and eliminate opportunity gaps. This includes using data to monitor school progress, coordinating professional development, one-on-one coaching, principal evaluations, and conducting frequent learning walks through school buildings to ensure quality instruction.

Jon earned a BA in history at the University of Washington, a Masters Degree at Antioch University, and his administrative certification with Heritage University. Jon and his wife are also the proud parents of two graduates of Seattle Public Schools. He is also a PSIA Level 1 Alpine ski instructor helping the young and the young at heart discover the fun and joy of sliding in the Northwest.

James Mercer
Director of Schools

James Mercer is a champion for children. He brings over 21 years of experience working with children from underserved communities into his role as director of schools. He has worked as an educator in four very different states with drastically different standards for students, teachers, and leaders. These differences proved to be the catalyst that encouraged him to enter the path of education leadership. James has served as an elementary teacher, middle school teacher, middle school assistant principal, middle school principal, and central office administrator. Additionally, James is a skilled facilitator that has worked with hundreds of administrators across the nation to improve their instructional leadership practices.

James earned his Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.) degree in elementary and early childhood education from the University of Toledo. He earned his Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree in educational leadership from Georgia State University. Most recently, James earned his Doctor of Education Leadership (Ed.L.D.) degree from Harvard University.

Tim Moynihan
Director of Schools

Tim Moynihan has a long commitment to serving Seattle students and families.

After teaching high school English in Edmonds, Wash., Tim joined Seattle Public Schools in 1999 as a head teacher at Gatewood Elementary School. During his tenure in Seattle, he served in a variety of leadership roles including assistant principal at Gatewood Elementary, and as principal at Olympic View and Adams Elementary Schools. Additionally, Tim had the opportunity to serve as the lower school principal at the International School of Belgrade, and at the Inter-Community School Zurich, experiences which allowed him to work and learn alongside educators from around the globe.

Most recently Tim served Seattle school leaders in the role of principal leadership coach. In that role, he helped mentor numerous novice principals and provided leadership coaching and professional development for both school and central office leadership. He is dedicated to supporting the instructional expertise of our school leaders in their work to ensure that every student has access to the educational opportunities they need to thrive.

Tim earned his BA in finance at Boston College, a Master’s Degree in Education from the University of Massachusetts Boston, and his principal certification from City University. Tim and his wife have two daughters who graduated from Seattle Public Schools.

Anthony Ruby
Director of Schools

Anthony Ruby joined Seattle Public Schools in 2019 from St. Louis Public Schools, where he served as a network superintendent (principal supervisor) and director of curriculum support. In St. Louis Public Schools, Tony helped implement district-wide standardized summative and formative assessments directly connected to standards. Prior to his work in St. Louis as a principal supervisor he serves as a principal, resident principal and teacher in Baltimore City Public Schools. He is a data-driven, results focused leader who believes in supporting leadership through differentiated supports to drive student outcomes.

As a member of Directors of Schools P-12 team, Tony supports and evaluates principals’ instructional leadership in order to increase student achievement, increase racial equity, and eliminate opportunity gaps. This includes using data to monitor school progress, coordinating professional development, one-on-one coaching, principal evaluations, and conducting frequent learning walks through school buildings to ensure quality instruction.

Tony earned his Bachelor of Arts in history and geography with honors from the University of Missouri. He earned his Master of Arts in teaching at Johns Hopkins University and is pursuing his Doctor of Education in educational leadership and administration from NOVA Southeastern University, Fischler School of Education. Tony is the proud parent of three current Seattle Public School students. Tony enjoys all aspects of being outside including camping, hiking and exploring the Pacific Northwest with his family.