Donna Hargens, the former Jefferson County Public Schools superintendent, is a finalist for a superintendent job in Arizona.
Hargens is one of four finalists for the top position at Tucson Unified School District, according to the district’s website. She is scheduled to appear next Thursday evening for a community visit at a local high school.
The district is the second-largest in the state with about 48,000 students behind Mesa Unified School District, according to a ranking by the review site Niche.com.
Gabriel Trujillo is the interim superintendent, appointed on March 28 by the Governing Board, according to the Tuscon News. Trujillo, who had been the district’s assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction since August 2016, is also a finalist, according to the district.
Hargens came to JCPS from North Carolina in 2011. She announced her resignation in April after turmoil over low test scores, low morale, student discipline and a district audit. The Kentucky Department of Education recently issued a scathing management review of the district’s handling of student safety and its overall culture, and has begun a wide-ranging management audit. Her resignation went into effect July 1.
JCPS is the state’s largest public school district, with about 101,000 students and 18,000 employees, including 6,000 teachers.