Seattle Public Schools

School Board Selects Dr. Jones as Superintendent

Summary: The Seattle School Board of Directors has selected Dr. Brent Jones to be the new superintendent of Seattle Public Schools.

The Seattle School Board of Directors has selected Dr. Brent Jones to be the new superintendent of Seattle Public Schools. Superintendent Jones has served as interim superintendent for the district since May 2021. His contract takes effect immediately.

A thoughtful and charismatic leader, Superintendent Jones has more than 20 years of experience in education and government agencies including six years at Seattle Public Schools. His expertise includes strategic planning, community engagement, change management, and human resources.

You can read the School Board meeting agenda that approved Superintendent Jones’ two-year contract on the March 11, 2022 Board Special Meeting Agenda page.

State of the District Address: Tuesday, March 15, 6 p.m.

Superintendent Jones will deliver the State of the District address on Tuesday, March 15, at 6 p.m. The event will be broadcast on SPS YouTube channel, Microsoft Teams, local cable channels Comcast (26), Wave (26), and Century Link (8008).

Board Authorizes Contract Negotiation with Dr. Jones

Posted: March 4

The Seattle Public Schools Board of Directors voted today to approve authorization to negotiate an employment contract with Dr. Brent Jones for the position of superintendent. 

Dr. Brent Jones has served as interim superintendent for Seattle Public Schools since May 2021.

The authorization came during a Board Special Meeting on March 4 that was called by board President Brandon K. Hersey.

“I am so incredibly excited to move into this phase of the process and I know that this is what our community needs at this juncture,” said School Board President Hersey.

The decision to negotiate a contract with Dr. Jones comes two months after the start of a national search for a new SPS superintendent.

“My mission is to create the conditions for students to thrive,” Dr. Jones said at the conclusion of the meeting. “We are going to do that together and I’m appreciative of what we’ve done so far. It’s only been 10 months; it seems like a long time, but we’ve come through some real heavy, heavy times and we’re still standing, our students are strong, our staff are strong.” 

With this board decision, the search for candidates – overseen by consulting firm HYA Associates – will pause while the board and Dr. Jones reach agreement on the new contract. 

The board and Dr. Jones will begin negotiating immediately. Upon agreement, the board will vote on whether to approve the contract at an upcoming public meeting.  

“We want to make sure our students have a sense of belonging, a sense of identity safety and that they know that adults love and care for them,” said Dr. Jones, who graduated from Franklin High School, the University of Washington for his undergraduate degree, and the University of Texas for his graduate degrees. “It’s that deep connection that creates the best chance for our students to excel and reach their highest level of academic achievement.” 

The Seattle School Board is engaged in a search for a superintendent for Seattle Public Schools.

Posted and Updated: February 28, 2022

The superintendent is responsible for the administration and management of the largest public school district in the Pacific Northwest. Seattle Public Schools serves over 52,000 students at 104 schools and with a combined capital and operating budget exceeding $1.5 billion dollars.

One of the responsibilities of the School Board is the hiring and evaluating the superintendent. The seven-member elected School Board expects the new superintendent to continue the district’s progress on the 2019-24 Strategic Plan, Seattle Excellence, and implementation of Student Outcome Focused Governance. At the February 24, 2021 regular school board meeting, the interim superintendent contract for Dr. Brent Jones was approved. Read more about the interim superintendent.

The School Board has retained the services of Hazard, Young, Attea & Associates, a consulting firm specializing in assisting school boards in the recruitment and selection of educational leaders.

Overview of Timeline

The firm is currently conducting interviews and leading focus groups to inform development of a leadership profile. That leadership profile is used in the recruitment process and will be presented to the School Board at the end of February.

All members of the SPS community are encouraged to complete the online survey, which will be open until February 15. Your input is valued and is an important part of the recruitment process.

Community Engagement and Feedback

The school board created several opportunities both leading up and during mid-winter break (February 21) for families to share their input on the superintendent search process.

The search firm interviewed stakeholder, convened focus groups, and posted on the SPS website an online survey open to all through February 15. SPS communicated the survey link to all families, encouraging broad participation.
The school board held an open comment session on February 15 for students and an open comment session on February 17 for all families prior to mid-winter break. SPS communicated both forums to all families.
The school board held an open comment session for families receiving special education services on February 22.

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