CH-UH Superintendent Talisa Dixon hired by Columbus, starts next year

September 22, 2018

CH-UH Superintendent Talisa Dixon hired by Columbus, starts next year

UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, Ohio -- CH-UH School Superintendent Talisa Dixon plans to finish out the current school year before taking over at the helm of the Columbus City Schools.

The Columbus City Board of Education voted unanimously Thursday (Sept. 20) to hire Dixon, capping off a national search that actually began last year.

“While we are disappointed to be losing a dynamic leader such as Dr. Dixon, we are honored that Ohio’s largest public school district has selected our leader as its next superintendent,” a Friday press release from the Cleveland Heights-University Heights school board stated.

An earlier press release from the Columbus school board expressed hope that she would be able to start her new post at the beginning of the next calendar year.

However, Dixon released a statement of her own, calling the Columbus offer a “once-in-a-career opportunity” but also committing to finishing out her fifth year with the CH-UH schools.

“We still have important work to finish this year, and that is why I am committed to staying in CH-UH through the end of the school year,” Dixon stated. “I intend to see through our initiatives here before transitioning to Columbus.”   

Hired for the start of the 2014-15 school year, having served 3-1/2 years as an assistant superintendent in Saginaw, Mich., and nine years as a principal or assistant principal in Columbus, Dixon was the third superintendent in as many years in the Heights.

The CH-UH school board then offered her a five-year contract extension signed in February 2017 that was supposed to run through the end of the 2021-22 school year.

Pending a formal background check, Columbus city school officials were not releasing a salary figure, still requiring negotiations and assistance from outside legal counsel.

Dixon is currently earning $165,000 a year in the CH-UH City School District.

“We are pleased that Dr. Dixon is choosing to finish out the school year with CH-UH to ensure we stay on track with our district’s 5-year Strategic Plan,” the Heights press release stated. “We appreciate the Columbus City school board’s anticipated flexibility in that.”

The Heights school board felt that Dixon’s hiring by Columbus served to “validate that we as a district are working on the right things: equity, community partnerships, improving communications with our families and community, and building strong relationships with our teachers and staff.”

In addition to being honored and humbled by the Columbus hiring, Dixon added that “this opportunity came about because of the great work we have done in Cleveland Heights-University Heights. I am thankful for all that we’ve accomplished here through the collective efforts of our teachers, administrators, staff, and community.”

She also thanked the district community for welcoming her four years ago.

“Whomever the leader is, the work will continue because of the support of the board of education and because of our dedicated staff who give their best efforts every day on behalf of our students,” Dixon said.

As for finding that leader, the school board planned to get moving on that soon.

“We will begin the important work of finding the right successor for our community as quickly as possible,” the CH-UH school district release stated.

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