THURSDAY, DECEMBER 3RD, 2020

On April 23, former Palo Alto High School Unified School District (PAUSD) Superintendent Kevin Skelly was appointed to the superintendent position of the San Mateo Union High School District (SMUHSD).

Skelly resigned as PAUSD superintendent at the end of the 2014 school year after seven years of service.

In a letter that addressed the PAUSD community, Skelly informed that his resignation was for personal reasons.

Before finding a position in the SMUHSD, Skelly was given the role of interim superintendent at a neighboring district, Mountain View-Whisman School District, where his employment began on Jan. 1. Mountain View-Whisman district’s board approved an appointment that would last six months.

Skelly’s role as SMUHSD superintendent is planned to commence on July 1. He will replace a former Palo Alto administrator, Scott Laurence.

In a press release issued to the public, Marc Friedman, president of the SMUHSD Board of Trustees explained the board’s selection.

“His known success at Palo Alto Unified for addressing student opportunity and achievement gaps, and his leadership in increasing the number of students that satisfy the UC and CSU ‘A-G’ requirements really helped the Board determine that Kevin was the best fit for the SMUHSD,” Friedman said.

The Board of Trustees evaluated possible candidates from the entire nation, conducting a search that led them to decide Skelly as the best match to lead San Mateo Union schools.

After hearing about Skelly’s relocation to the San Mateo Union district, junoir Albert Leng had feelings on about Skelly’s performance based on his previous role as PAUSD superintendent.

“I think that Superintendent Skelly will face similar issues [at SMUHSD] like the ones he faced at PAUSD, especially because he did not deal with the bullying problem at Palo Alto schools,” Leng said.

Leng is referring to the criticisms Skelly received for not disclosing the federal findings of an investigation into whether or not the civil rights of a disabled middle school student were infringed upon by bullying.

Regardless of Skelly’s previous decision to resign as PAUSD superintendent, he has managed to maintain a superintendent role. At the close of his interim position at the Mountain View-Whisman district, Skelly will begin to manage schools in the San Mateo Union, which is composed of an approximation of 8,200 students.

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