Pittsburgh Public Schools board accepts resignation of 'envisioning' leader

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The board of Pittsburgh Public Schools tonight accepted the resignation of Cate Reed, executive director of strategic priorities, who has been leading the district's efforts to "envision" its future along with consultants paid by a $2.4 million grant.

Ms. Reed is returning to Teach for America to do teacher support and development for six East Coast cities. Her resignation is effective Sept. 24.

The board also approved additional pay for additional duties for two administrators: Jerri Lynn Lippert, chief academic officer, will receive a stipend of $5,000 per semester this school year. Allison McCarthy, director of academic initiatives, will be paid an extra $2,500 per semester.

Ms. Lippert's extra duties are the result of vacancies in the office of school performance and the chief academic office. Ms. McCarthy's extra duties are a result of the continued search for an executive director of curriculum, instruction and assessment and extra curriculum work as the Common Core State Standards are implemented.

Pittsburgh Public Schools superintendent Linda Lane said the district will be holding off filling two vacancies for assistant superintendents in school performance until the second semester.

The board also agreed to pay Constance Sims, who has worked as a consultant in recent years on teacher evaluation and growth, up to $98,690 for 139 days at $710 a day to help the superintendent manage the office of school performance.

Thirteen principals also will be receiving extra pay. They are "vertical leads" and "horizontal leads." Vertical leads help to support K-12 schools that largely feed into one another. Horizontal leads help five or six schools with the same grade configurations. Each receives $3,500. Those who are both vertical and horizontal leads receive $5,000. This will be the second year for such positions.

Vertical lead principals are Kevin Bivins and Rudley Mrvos. Horizontal lead principals are Monica Lamar, Melissa Wagner, Edward Littlehale and Paula Heinzman.

Those with both roles are Theresa Cherry, Laura Dadey, Melissa Friez, Melissa Pearlman, Sally Rifugiato and Ruthie Rea as well as Gina Reichert, who is a director.

Ms. Reed is one of eight top administrators who have left the district through retirement or resignation in 2013.

The other seven who left earlier are: Janis Ripper, chief student services; Pete Camarda, chief financial and operations officer; Nancy Rocco Kodman, executive director of school performance;Barbara Rudiak, who had been assistant superintendent of school performance but filled in as interim chief of student services; Jeannine French, deputy superintendent; Paulette Poncelet, chief of research and assessment; and Lisa Fischetti, who was chief of staff and external affairs.

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Education writer Eleanor Chute: echute@post-gazette.com, 412-263-1955 and on Twitter @Eleanor_Chute.


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