to fill in for Deasy until a successor is chosen The Executive Board of the Santa Monica Malibu Classroom Teacher’s Association announced last night that it intends to recommend that current Assistant Superintendent Mike Matthews be named Interim Superintendent of Schools. Matthews would fill in for Superintendent John Deasy, who has accepted a job as CEO of the King George’s County School District and is tentatively set to leave Santa Monica on May 20.Union President Harry M. Keiley urged that Matthews be appointed temporary Superintendent, saying: “Dr. Matthews has the institutional knowledge to ensure a smooth transition and, more importantly, he has the mind and heart to help lead this district. There’s no doubt that Mike Matthews is the clear choice of Union leadership for the interim job.”The union leadership is solidly united in its support of Matthews, who was an important player in last year’s negotiations between the district and the union. Sarah Braff a member of SMMCTA’s Executive Board and Negotiations team praised Matthews for his role in those negotiations, saying: “Mike really values teachers and what they do. He helped make sure our negotiations were done in a respectful and professional manner and that the final outcome was fair to everyone involved.” A committee of teachers and administrators, including Matthews, spent three years developing a new teachers evaluation system based on the California Standards for the Teaching Profession. The new Standards Based Evaluation was implemented for all temporary and probationary teachers this year. “Matthews respects the process and is mindful that in order for meaningful change to be adopted by teachers, they must have true buy in,” said Executive Board member Jenny Lipson.Prior to becoming an assistant superintendent, Matthews served as a principal at Malibu High School. He has worked in the district for thirteen years. Union officials believe that Matthews’ institutional knowledge, leadership style and past accomplishments in the district will help to ensure a smooth transition from Deasy’s tenure as superintendent to the appointment of whomever is ultimately named to succeed him. The Teacher’s Association will continue to offer its ideas about likely candidates for district superintendent and is currently making plans to survey its members about the qualities they seek in a new administrator, as well as possible candidates.
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