On Saturday, February 22, 2020, Washtenaw Intermediate School District (WISD) Superintendent Scott Menzel, PhD, was named the next superintendent of Scottsdale Unified School District (SUSD) in Phoenix, Arizona. Menzel was one of three finalists selected from a list of 29 applicants to be interviewed by the district’s Board and five advisory committees. After interviewing on Friday, February 21, followed by deliberations that evening and the next day, Dr. Menzel was selected with 5-0 unanimous vote by SUSD’s governing board.
“I have been incredibly blessed to serve as superintendent of Washtenaw ISD during the last nine years,” said Menzel. “We are fortunate our community is committed to providing outstanding educational opportunities to all students, and I am proud of the work our team at Washtenaw ISD has done to expand supports to children and families from birth through college and career.”
During Menzel’s time at Washtenaw ISD, the district has grown in a number of ways to better meet the needs of children and families, such as establishing an early childhood department that now manages early educational programs such as Head Start, the Great Start Readiness Program, and home visiting services for families with young children ages birth to three. The WISD has also played a key role in establishing a local college access network to increase access to post-secondary education and training programs. One of the most notable successes of Menzel’s leadership was facilitating the merging of Ypsilanti Public Schools and Willow Run Community Schools to form Ypsilanti Community Schools. In August 2019, voters approved a $53.295 million bond to significantly renovate WISD’s High Point School, which serves students with severe and multiple disabilities from across Washtenaw County.
“We are grateful to Dr. Menzel for his leadership and fierce commitment to creating a more equitable and socially just educational system for students in Washtenaw County,” said Dr. Theresa Saunders, WISD Board President. “While we will be saddened to see Dr. Menzel go, we wish him the absolute best as he moves on to the next chapter in his career. We know the students, families and staff of Scottsdale Unified Schools will be as impressed with Dr. Menzel as we have been at Washtenaw ISD.”
Dr. Menzel’s contract with WISD expires June 30, 2020, and he will be negotiating a start date with the Scottsdale Unified governing board. The WISD Board of Education will begin planning next steps for a transition this week.