AUSTIN (KXAN) — Superintendent Meria Carstarphen was elected 2014 chair of the Texas Urban Council of Superintendents, a network of the largest urban school districts in Texas representing approximately 777,000 students and 50,000 teachers throughout Texas.
The Texas Urban Council of Superintendents was established as part of the Education Leadership initiative in an effort to strengthen the link among leadership development, a more focused learning environment and increased student performance by increasing the number of principals and teacher-leaders able to successfully lead change in high-need schools.
During Carstarphen’s tenure at AISD, the district’s most vulnerable student groups have seen increased attendance and graduation rates, higher scores in state assessments, higher school ratings, and more college-ready students with decreasing dropout rates.
Urban districts face a variety of challenges trying to serve larger percentages of children living in poverty who are less likely to have parents with high levels of education and are often trying to balance different barriers. The challenges are multiplied from urban districts as they try to maximize resources to provide support for not only academic, but developmental, socio-emotional medical and enrichment needs as well. The council provides an opportunity for superintendents to share best practices and insights with each other as they work to continuously improve student outcomes in their districts.