New Haven Unified School District

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Board Briefs for May 2, 2017

Board Briefs for Tuesday, May 2, 2017


At Tuesday night’s meeting, the Board announced the results of their months long superintendent search.  With a 5-0 vote, the Board appointed Dr. Arlando Smith as the New Haven Unified School District’s Superintendent effective July 1, 2017.

Dr. Smith has served the District and the New Haven community since 2012 as the Chief Academic Officer, supervising the District’s Division of Teaching and Learning.  In August of 2013, the Board made the decision to move to a Co-Superintendent model, elevating both Dr. Smith and Chief Business Officer, Akur Varadarajan, to the role.  

In October of 2016, the Board announced that the Co-Superintendency model had served its purpose and initiated a search for a new district leader.  This nation-wide pursuit brought together a number of high-caliber and exceptionally qualified candidates for the Board’s assessment and consideration.  After a process that included multiple interviews with a variety of stakeholders, the Board compiled and reviewed all stakeholder input and arrived at their decision, tapping Dr. Smith to lead the District at the end of this school year.

Dr. Smith and Mr. Varadarajan will continue in their Co-Superintendent roles until the end of June.


Also at Tuesday night's meeting, the Board recognized Itliong-Vera Cruz Middle School students Ashna Singhal and Riya Singhal, two members of the all-girls LEGO Robotics team, the Robo Maniacs.  Along with Thornton Junior High School student, Shikha Adhikari, the three competed in the FIRST LEGO League (FLL) tournament and won the Champion’s Award at the FLL Northern California East Bay Championship, held in Newark on Dec 18th.  Winners of this award are chosen on all aspects of the FLL: robot performance, core values, project and robot design.  Additionally, winners are chosen for demonstrating their ability to inspire and motivate others about the excitement of science and technology, solve problems, and demonstrate respect and gracious professionalism.  This year’s FLL theme was Animal Allies. The team worked on solving the problem of stress faced by mice during animal testing. They shared their solution, “MiceWay” with the Director of Laboratory Animal Research Center (LARC) at University of California, San Francisco and his team of researchers.

Congratulations, Robo Maniacs!


A link to the complete agenda from Tuesday’s meeting can be found here.