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Houston School Board to Consider Naming Interim Leader as Superintendent

Acting superintendent Grenita Lathan has served that role for about two months and is the first black woman to lead the Houston Independent School District

In March, Dr. Grenita Lathan was chosen to HISD as acting Superintendent, after the departure of Superintendent Richard Carranza.

The Houston school board could appoint its interim superintendent as its permanent top administrator, since the item has been posted on the board’s agenda for its meeting Thursday.

In March, trustees unanimously named Grenita Lathan as its temporary leader after its previous superintendent, Richard Carranza, left for a job in New York City.

Lathan has now been interim superintendent for about two months. And as the first black woman in that role, she is leading the state’s largest school district through unprecedented challenges, including the threat of a state takeover. She joined the Houston Independent School District (HISD) in 2015 and previously was superintendent of Peoria Public Schools in Illinois. 

Board president Rhonda Skillern Jones told News 88.7 in a text message that they have to post the potential appointment to discuss it. She said that other options would be part of that discussion, such as conducting a superintendent search in the future.

HISD Trustee Elizabeth Santos said that she was surprised by the agenda item and that the “urgency should be for the process — not the person.”

“I think we owe the public that, we owe our employees, we owe each other that. We owe the transparency that is due when finding a superintendent,” Santos said.

“My community expects to be involved in the superintendent process and expects transparency. This agenda item does neither,” said Trustee Diana Davila, who represents much of East Houston in District VIII.

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Laura Isensee

Laura Isensee

Education Reporter

Laura Isensee covers education for Houston Public Media, including K-12 and higher education. Previously, she was a staff reporter at The Miami Herald and contributed to South Florida’s NPR affiliate. Her work has also appeared in The Dallas Morning News, Reuters and Clarín in Argentina. Laura has won awards for...

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