Gresham-Barlow School Board selected Dr. A. Katrise Perera to serve as superintendent of schools beginning July 1, 2017. Prior to that, Dr. Perera was named Gresham-Barlow School District Superintendent of Schools and National Association of School Superintendents 2015 Superintendent-of-the-Year Recipient. She is a self-proclaimed life long learner and former urban markets division national director for McGraw Hill Education.
Dr. Perera has served as superintendent in Isle of Wight County Schools (IWCS) in Smithfield (VA) from 2011 – 2015. While at IWCS, she saw an expansion of new opportunities for online courses, dual enrollment opportunities, and an iSLE 21 Initiative. She led the districts vision development, planning, and initial implementation for a new STEAM instructional program,
When she departed in June 2015, IWCS had progressed to the number four academic ranking out of fifteen school districts in Region II and 14th out of 134 Virginia school districts, which in combination with improved academic successes contributed to a decrease in the dropout rates (less than 3% points) and an increase in the on-time (4-year cohorts) graduation rates (93% – up from 88% in 2011), which surpassed the state average of 86%. The number of IWCS students that applied for and attended a two or four-year college increased from 21% in 2011 to an all-time high of 73% in 2015. The SAT scores improved by 27 points
The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) and the governor’s office recognized the school districts Title I elementary schools and in 2014 an IWCS most challenged elementary school was awarded a National Blue Ribbon of Excellence and a National Title I School of Excellence in 2014 &2015
Additionally, Dr. Perera has served as an area superintendent/school improvement officer (SIO) in the nation’s seventh largest school district – Houston Independent School District (HISD) in Houston, Texas.
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Lisa Riggs is the assistant superintendent of curriculum, instruction, and assessment for the Gresham-Barlow School District (GBSD).
Riggs has a master’s of education in educational leadership from the University of Victoria, B.C., Canada. In addition, she has earned a master’s of education in curriculum and instruction from Seattle City University. She has a bachelor of arts degree in English and education from Washington State University.
In conjunction with the district leadership team, building principals, instructional coaches, technology department, and staff, Riggs works on the planning of an instructional framework, actionable steps towards district goals, and the implementation of innovative instructional program improvements in the district from pre-kindergarten through grade 12.
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