East Bay superintendent tapped to lead high school district

Mountain View-Los Altos board offering $300K salary to Nellie Meyer

Mountain View-Los Altos High School District board members unanimously agreed to hire Nellie Meyer, a long-time California school administrator, to be the district's next superintendent, according to a Monday statement by the district. She begins her new role in July.

Meyer has served for six years as the superintendent of the Mount Diablo Unified School District, a district in the East Bay with more than 32,000 students and five high schools. She previously worked in multiple administrative roles at San Diego Unified School District, including jobs focused solely on high school programs and dropout prevention.

Nellie Meyer
Launching her teaching career in Southern California, Meyer started as a teacher's aide at Jackson Elementary School, where the vast majority of students qualified for subsidized meals and many spoke English as a second language. She taught grades ranging from fifth to 12th, and rose through the ranks, becoming a high school dean, vice principal and then principal. She also received a doctorate in education, focusing her thesis on dropout prevention.

The three-year contract, which board members unanimously approved Monday evening, includes an annual base salary of $302,500, which would increase at the same rate as other management salaries.

In the announcement, board president Phil Faillace hailed Meyer as a leader who will take an even-handed approach to supporting both low- and high-performing students while maintaining an "intense focus" on the well-being of individual students.

"Dr. Meyer understands that our community wants our schools to give each student, from the lowest performing to the highest, the academic, social, and emotional tools not merely to realize her or his potential for an intellectually and emotionally gratifying life of learning, but to extend that potential," Faillace said.

The announcement caps off a monthslong search to replace current Superintendent Jeff Harding, who announced last year that he would be retiring at the end of June. The district's hired search firm sought feedback from teachers, community members and students, compiling the input into a short list of important characteristics. At the top of the list was someone who could create a "positive" climate of mutual trust among staff, followed by an understanding and sensitivity to the needs of a diverse student population.

The contract includes a $25,000 housing allowance to pay for relocation expenses to a place within 20 miles of the district office. The full contract can be viewed here.

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5 people like this
Posted by Doug Pearson
a resident of another community
on Apr 8, 2019 at 8:57 pm

Doug Pearson is a registered user.

It appears the district has done its homework and found a good candidate.

7 people like this
Posted by MDUSD parent
a resident of another community
on Apr 9, 2019 at 9:49 am

Congratulations to MVLAHSD for wooing a much-needed superintendent away from a district that was benefiting from her leadership to an affluent district using a firm that cares not about the community in which she was enticed away from. Once again, the wealthy take from others.

3 people like this
Posted by MDUSD parent
a resident of another community
on Apr 9, 2019 at 10:18 am

Congratulations to Nellie and gratitude for the positive influence she had on our community! Happy to see her getting a great offer. We will miss her leadership.

3 people like this
Posted by MDUSD Teacher
a resident of another community
on Apr 9, 2019 at 12:51 pm

Our loss is truly their gain. Wishing the good Dr. well!

6 people like this
Posted by No Wooing Needed
a resident of Shoreline West
on Apr 9, 2019 at 11:15 pm

Did she forfeit a contract? The community who needed her so badly couldn't even provide enough board candidates to require an election. Weak board with tenured staff she couldn't get rid of. This much smaller district will suit her better. The money isn't significant considering housing prices. She left for different reasons. Affluence is only a rationale if it makes sense.

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