Dear Eanes ISD Community,
On behalf of the Eanes community, the Board of Trustees would like to congratulate Dr. Tom Leonard on his pending retirement and to thank him for his 42-year commitment to public education. Few lives reflect such focus.
With Dr. Leonard's announcement, our search for a new superintendent will commence quickly. Our goal is for the next superintendent to be in place for the beginning of the 2022-2023 school year.
Since coming to Eanes in May of 2014, Dr. Leonard has worked tirelessly for our students, teachers, and community. When Dr. Leonard retires, he will leave us better than when he arrived. The metrics speak for themselves.
During Dr. Leonard’s tenure, ACT and SAT scores increased and the number of National Merit Semi-Finalists grew. Consider last year’s graduating seniors. An incredible 23% of the Class of 2021 went straight into UT Austin or Texas A&M. Seniors were accepted into 334 colleges and universities around the globe and are now attending 160 schools.
Our students are competing successfully in district, regional, state, national and global competitions. These achievements belong to our musicians, entrepreneurs, athletes, STEM, and creative types, and they are enjoyed across all grade levels and all campuses. The scale is simply unprecedented.
With Dr. Leonard’s guidance, Eanes expanded and built new facilities to better serve and enrich the experiences of students. We added new courses, programs, and access to existing activities in an effort to meet the growing and changing needs of 21st-century learners.
Eanes is consistently the most highly rated school district in Texas and recognized among the very finest in the country. There are a number of reasons for this, but the District’s forward-focused leadership philosophy distinguishes Eanes among our peers.
Dr. Leonard’s contract ends in 2023. Some time ago, Dr. Leonard, the Board and its attorneys began discussing his pending retirement and the need for Eanes to be in the strongest posture heading into what is anticipated to be among the most competitive Superintendent search seasons we have experienced.
The Board believes the current Fall-Winter window will provide the District with the best access to the finest candidates and the greatest opportunity for a smooth ending and a new beginning. Pending the search results, the Board will designate a lone finalist during this Winter. The candidate will be selected and officially begin their tenure as Eanes new Superintendent of Schools prior to the beginning of the 2022-2023 school year. Dr. Leonard will assist in a smooth and stable transition once the position is filled.
The Superintendent search will begin formally Monday, October 25 with a Special Meeting of the Board. In that meeting, the Board of Trustees will interview three Superintendent search firms, and if possible, take action to engage one. We will finalize the specific elements of the search process and timeline in conjunction with the search firm. Know that whatever the process, it will include opportunities for teachers, students, parents and community members to participate and provide input on desired leadership characteristics.
Our community has very high expectations. Our traditions are proud and well established. Our District and our kids are thriving, but we have big shoes to fill.
We must now collaboratively move forward for the betterment of this process, our students, and our community.
Thank you for your continued support for our schools and our students.
John Havenstrite, President
James Spradley, Vice President
Heather Sheffield, Secretary
Ellen Balthazar, Trustee
Jennifer Champagne, Trustee
Laura Clark, Trustee
Kim McMath, Trustee