AESD Board of Ed to consider new superintendent tonight

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After an extensive and highly competitive recruitment process, the Anaheim Elementary School District (AESD) Board of Education will consider the appointment of Christopher Downing to the position of Superintendent at its next Board Meeting of May 9.

Downing currently serves as Local District Superintendent for the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) in the southern region of the city with an enrollment of approximately 88,000 students.

“I am honored to be considered for this incredible opportunity,” said Downing. “As a passionate advocate for children, I have worked for almost 30 years to ensure success and enrichment for all students. Anaheim Elementary has a demonstrated commitment to the community through innovative programs and experienced educators in the classroom. It would be a privilege to lead this dynamic team.”

The recruitment garnered significant interest from across the state yielding 44 applicants, including several sitting Superintendents. Candidates were evaluated through comprehensive interviews with the Board of Education concluding with a final site visit that was held at LAUSD on May 7.

“The Board is extremely impressed with Christopher’s diverse experience, particularly in the areas of enhancing the curriculum and parent and community engagement,” said AESD Board President Jackie Filbeck. “We look forward to our visit next week to learn more about his leadership and the impact of his work in the South Los Angeles community.”

Downing began his career with LAUSD in 1989 as a classroom teacher. He has served in various site and district level leadership roles including Principal, Instructional Director, Administrator of Parent and Community Services, and Coordinator of Specially Funded Programs.

During his tenure, he worked to increase the number of dual language programs in the Local District to 35 and expanded offerings in Spanish, Korean and Mandarin. He implemented a focus on Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) across the curriculum including the creation of 50 STEAM Academies. He also established interventions and professional development to support academic achievement for at-risk students.

Downing was recently named 2018 Superintendent of the Year by the Association of California School Administrators Region XIV. He earned his Bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Los Angeles and his Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from Pepperdine University. He is currently pursuing his Doctorate in Education Leadership from the University of Southern California.

As the preferred candidate, Downing’s appointment is subject to a successful visitation by the AESD Board of Education to LAUSD early next week. If approved at the May 9 board meeting, he would begin duties July 1.

As one of the largest elementary school districts in California, AESD serves approximately 17,000 Pre K-6 students at 23 schools throughout the City of Anaheim, Orange County’s largest city.

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