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May 15, 2021

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Vancouver schools chief named superintendent of the year

Jim Parsley was last Vancouver chief to win award

By , Columbian Education Reporter
Published:

Steven Webb, superintendent of Vancouver Public Schools, has been named 2016 Superintendent of the Year by the Washington Association of School Administrators.

The award recognizes “the outstanding leadership of active, front-line superintendents,” according to an association news release announcing the award.

Webb was selected for the award for leading the district’s improvements, including increasing the on-time graduation rate, increasing program choice and expanding school-community partnerships to meet needs of students living in poverty.

The award is “an affirmation of the good work done collectively — with teachers, staff, students and administrators,” Webb said. “I can’t do this work alone. It takes a village. I am proud of the progress we’ve made.”

Webb also has provided national leadership via several initiatives including Digital Promise League of Innovative Schools and the U.S. Department of Education Future Ready Initiative.

The last time a Clark County superintendent earned the award was in 1994, when Jim Parsley of Vancouver Public Schools was the recipient.

The award includes $1,000 to use toward an educational program of the superintendent’s choice. Webb says he is earmarking the money through the Foundation for Vancouver Public Schools to the district’s Family-Community Resource Centers to help children in need.

He noted the steady increase in the percentage of district students who qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. Before the recession, in May 2006, 38.6 percent of students in the district qualified. Last May, 51.6 percent of district students qualified for free or reduced-price lunch.

Webb says the district will continue to focus on supporting low-income students through its Family-Community Resource Centers, and on advancing the district’s strategic plan and technology-related initiatives.

Webb also is a candidate for the 2016 American Association of School Administrators’ National Superintendent of the Year Award, to be announced in February in Phoenix.

About 23,500 students are enrolled in the Vancouver district, the second-largest in Clark County. Webb has been the district’s superintendent since 2008.

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