Wanted: Beneficial Partnerships
An Experienced District Leader with a Progressive Approach
by Dr. Rod Berger
Having begun his teaching career in 1977 after graduating from Washington State University, Dr. Mike Brophy now finds himself running the West Valley – Yakima School District in Washington. As superintendent, he has set some impressive goals for the district including an early childhood PreK – 3 initiative and full day kindergarten. All students are reaching their reading and math benchmarks while gaining the skills necessary for college and career readiness.
I had a chance to talk to Mike at the recent AASA conference in New Orleans. He considers himself a marketer spreading the word about his district, and always on the lookout for beneficial outside partnership opportunities. One such example is an online learning community in Missouri that has partnered with the school district to provide students the opportunity to take online courses for credit.
A blended learning initiative has also been launched creating a personalized and individualized learning pathway for his students. The learning environment allows parents to have access to the process, maintaining procedural transparency. The program is tied to funding from the state, which incentivizes the district to monitor student progress to ensure students complete their coursework.
All in all, it is clear that Mike combines decades of experience in teaching and administration with a very open and progressive outlook. He embraces technology and promotes open communication to create a positive learning environment that will maximize student outcomes.
About Dr. Mike Brophy
Dr. Mike Brophy graduated in 1977 from Washington State University earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Studies/Education. Shortly thereafter, he began a ten-year teaching and coaching career where he enjoyed the relationships that were formed in the classroom and the athletic field.
Mike spent three years as an assistant principal followed by eleven years as a high school principal in two Washington high schools, Aberdeen on the coast, and Eastmont in Central Washington. From 1996 through 1998, he participated in the Washington State University Superintendent Certification Cohort Group, earning his Initial Superintendent’s Certificate. He earned his doctorate in May 2005 from Washington State University. He joined the Eastmont District Leadership Team as Assistant Superintendent of Personnel and Operations after seven years as principal.
Following five years as assistant superintendent at Eastmont School District, he accepted an assistant superintendent position in the Bethel School District in Spanaway, WA, where he supervised nine secondary schools, an alternative program, as well as an online academy.
In May of 2011, Mike was selected as Superintendent of the West Valley – Yakima School District. The District was named a College Board AP Honor Roll District two years in a row, and a District Administration District of Distinction for Student Achievement as well as Early Learning. Mike was recently named Washington State PTA Educator of the Year.
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This article was originally posted on Huffington Post by Dr. Rod Berger