Rochester Board of Education announces confirmation of new superintendent

Updated: May 18, 2020 07:10 PM
Created: May 18, 2020 04:35 PM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — The Rochester Board of Education Monday announced it unanimously named Lesli Myers-Small, Ed.D. as the new superintendent of the Rochester City School District.

She's scheduled to start on Tuesday.

Myers-Small is currently with the New York State Education Department working as the Assistant Commissioner of Innovation and School Reform. Before that, she was superintendent of Brockport Central School District.

She was confirmed during Monday night’s special meeting according to the board. Board President Van White says she's the only candidate they considered.

"There was one name, that came up, and only one name that came up in the context of finding a new superintendent," White said. "And it wasn't even a name for an interim. It was a name for a permanent superintendent and the name of the doc, Lesli."

Myers-Small says she's not planning on leaving the district any time soon.

"I am not going anywhere," Myers-Small said. "And I know other leaders have said that and I'm just going to have to prove it by the work that I do but this place is home for me unequivocally. I grew up in the area. All four of my degrees come from local colleges and universities. I am very committed."

She recorded the video below, which was posted to RCSD's YouTube page.

Current Superintendent Terry Dade was hired as the superintendent of the Cornwall Central School District, which is in the Hudson Valley, last month. He had only served as RCSD's superintendent for nine months when he announced he was ready to move on.

This comes as the district is facing a budget gap worsened by the coronavirus pandemic. The district's CFO also recently took another position.

Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren released the following statement on Myers-Small's appointment:

“Dr. Lesli Myers-Small is a tremendous educator and has spent her career dedicated to improving the lives of children. I know Dr. Myers-Small, if truly empowered to do so, can improve our school district, and therefore, our city. I am equally heartened that she will be the first woman of color to serve our community in this role. This milestone is worthy of recognition and celebration. While my longstanding concerns regarding our school district remain and must be addressed. Tonight, I congratulate Dr. Myers-Small on her accomplishment and welcome her to our efforts to ensure every child in Rochester receives the education they deserve.”

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