Education

Mansfield superintendent to retire in 2020 after leading district’s academic success

Jim Vaszauskas, superintendent of Mansfield schools, announced his retirement. His last day will be Feb. 5, 2020.
Jim Vaszauskas, superintendent of Mansfield schools, announced his retirement. His last day will be Feb. 5, 2020.

Mansfield Superintendent Jim Vaszauskas announced he is retiring from his post next February — a move that comes after 37 years in education.

“I love Mansfield ISD! However, in my heart, I believe it is time for this wonderful district to have new leadership,” Vaszauskas said in a press release. “I pledge to make this transition smooth and fully trust that the amazing MISD School Board will find the best leader for this district who will fulfill the needs of students, staff and community.”

Vaszauskas’ last day will be Feb. 5, 2020.

The Mansfield school board is setting up a process for hiring a new superintendent. This process will be discussed at Tuesday school board meeting.

Mansfield is one of Tarrant County’s growing school districts with 46 schools and more than 35,200 students. It serves students living in Mansfield and portions of Arlington, Burleson, Fort Worth, Grand Prairie, Venus, Alvarado and Kennedale.

Vaszauskas came to Mansfield in 2009 as superintendent of curriculum and instruction. In 2013, he was named interim superintendent. He was later promoted to superintendent.

The superintendent’s most recent contract with the district was signed in September last year and it lists his salary at $260,701.20. He has several other benefits with the district, including car and business allowances and longevity pay.

While at Mansfield schools, Vaszauskas was named the 2017 Region 11 Superintendent of the Year and was a top finalist for the 2017 Texas Superintendent of the Year award. The district also received an “A” from the Texas Education Agency under his leadership.

During Vaszauskas’ leadership, voters approved a $275 million bond plan aimed at addressing needs for the growing school district.

That bond program, which has projects underway, includes funds for new schools, security upgrades, renovations, athletic facilities and science labs.

Vaszauskas’ tenure has not been without some controversy. The district made national headlines in 2018 for placing an art teacher on administrative leave after parents complained of her sexual orientation.

Still, Vaszauskas leaves a district with a reputation for high academic success and athletic triumphs.

“While we will never be able to replace Dr. Vaszauskas, I am confident that we will be able to find another great leader who will continue to prioritize student success,” said Karen Marcucci, school board president, in a press release. “We are committed to continue our work to focus on student outcomes and maintain a tradition of excellence.”

Mansfield schools in the spotlight

During Vaszauskas’ tenure the district experienced many successes in athletics, including this year’s Timberview boys basketball team winning the 5A state title in March. It was the Wolves’ second championship in three years.

Meanwhile, in girls athletics, the Legacy girls soccer team went to the state finished as 5A state runner up. It was the first time any Mansfield girls soccer team had reached the state tournament.

Lake Ridge jumper Jasmine Moore won her fourth straight title in both the triple jump and long jump. She set the national record in the triple jump. In the high jump, Mansfield’s jumper Jill Johnson won her second straight state title in the high jump.

Timberview girls basketball coach Kit Kyle Martin was named high school national coach of the year in March. The Summit boys 4 x 100 relay won the state title in May.

These successes come as district makes investments in athletics. Next school year, Mansfield’s five high schools will all have new multi-purpose athletic facilities.

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