PORTLAND – It was just a few short months ago that Gregory-Portland Superintendent Dr. Paul Clore announced his retirement after 19 years of service. As of his planned retirement date of Dec. 31, 2020, he will have served a total of 47 years as an educator, including 28 of those years as a superintendent for Texas public school districts.

Following a statewide search for G-PISD’s new superintendent, the district’s Board of Trustees selected their lone finalist by a unanimous 7-0 vote. Dr. Michelle Cavazos currently serves as the chief officer for School Leadership, Academics and Social Emotional Learning at Austin ISD and is looking to call G-PISD her new home.

“When you think about putting a large puzzle together, like a school district, I think Dr. Cavazos is the piece that really fits what we were looking for as a school board,” G-PISD School Board President Victor Hernandez said.

Cavazos served as a school principal for elementary, middle and high schools from 2004 to 2016, then became the director of secondary education services for Schertz-Cibolo-Universal City ISD from 2016 to 2018. She has served Austin ISD in her current role since 2018. She also formerly served as a bilingual classroom teacher.

Cavazos earned a Doctorate in Education for School Improvement from Texas State University, a Master of Education in School Administration from the University of Houston  and a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish from the University of Northern Iowa. 

In response to the unanimous vote, Cavazos said, “I am honored and thrilled to join the Gregory-Portland family, and look forward to getting to know everyone while working alongside our dedicated board of trustees, staff and community to realize our mission to empower, engage and inspire our Wildcat nation to be the Destination District!”

G-PISD received 34 applications for the position of superintendent and the board interviewed nine candidates before selecting Cavazos as the lone finalist. Hernandez said the number of applicants revealed that many were interested in serving as the next leader for G-PISD and attributed the district’s success to its long-time leadership and staff. 

“Before we move forward, I’d like to thank Dr. Paul Clore, who has been here (as superintendent) for 19 years,” Hernandez  added. “I applaud his efforts and his work that (resulted) in so many applicants clamoring to be here. My hat’s off to Dr. Clore, and all the staff who have done great work all these years.”

State law requires a 21-day waiting period before a superintendent can be hired. The board will take final action to hire Cavazos on July 6 or soon thereafter.

Paul Gonzales is a reporter at The News of San Patricio and can be reached at 361-364-1270, or by email at pgonzales@mysoutex.com.

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