ACPS Superintendent Search
Updated—May 4, 2023
Alexandria City School Board Appoints Dr. Melanie Kay-Wyatt as ACPS Superintendent
Contact: Julia Burgos at email@example.com or 703-217-4270
Interim superintendent is selected in national search process to lead school division permanently
ALEXANDRIA, Va. (May 4, 2023)—At today’s Alexandria City School Board meeting, the School Board announced that Dr. Melanie Kay-Wyatt will serve as the new permanent superintendent for Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS), effective July 1, 2023. Kay-Wyatt was selected from a pool of 35 applicants in a national search process that the Board launched in November 2022 with consultants McPherson & Jacobson, L.L.C Executive Recruitment and Development.
The search included feedback from 2,056 community survey participants and representation from 19 stakeholder groups who participated in several focus group meetings. With the support of the executive search consultants, the board narrowed the interviews down to five finalists. Dr Kay-Wyatt emerged from a rigorous process as the best candidate to move our schools forward. She has led the division as the ACPS interim superintendent since Sept. 1, 2022, and will remain in this role until becoming the permanent superintendent on July 1, 2023, with a contract that extends through June 30, 2027. Dr. Kay-Wyatt will be the first Black female permanent superintendent of ACPS.
“The School Board is excited to announce Dr. Melanie Kay-Wyatt as our next permanent superintendent for ACPS. She is an experienced, forward-thinking leader, and is exactly what we need for our school division’s success. She brings to this role a focus on academic excellence and social-emotional well-being for our students, and will continue to emphasize and ensure that we have safe schools,” said Alexandria City School Board Chair Meagan L. Alderton. “Dr. Kay-Wyatt’s experience as a teacher, school administrator, human resources expert and division-wide leader is crucial to her vision for creating a more supportive, positive climate and community that extends from Central Office all the way through our schools.” Alderton added, “The Board also wants to express our gratitude to Dr. Kay-Wyatt for stepping up when she was needed last summer and adapting quickly to serving ACPS as interim superintendent during this school year.”
Kay-Wyatt was ACPS chief of human resources before her appointment as interim superintendent in August 2022; previously, she had served as acting chief of human resources and executive director of human resources. She joined the school division in July 2021. Prior to ACPS, Kay-Wyatt worked in Human Resources at Spotsylvania Public Schools, served as a principal and assistant principal at Fredericksburg City Public Schools, and was a special education teacher at both Culpepper County Schools and Fredericksburg City Public Schools. She has also served as an executive coach and educational consultant, as well as a faculty member at the College of William and Mary and Shenandoah University. Under Kay-Wyatt’s leadership, the ACPS Department of Human Resources significantly increased recruitment and hiring, strengthened partnerships with universities, improved staff onboarding and elevated employee wellness and recognition. She was instrumental in designing and leading the staff vaccination and testing requirement process in Fall 2021 and ensuring that all schools and offices remained open throughout the 2021-22 school year with innovative strategies to identify and reassign staff as needed during critical staff shortages.
Kay-Wyatt has held various leadership positions in the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD), including as president and chair of the Board of Directors, and was involved in educational policy at the state and federal levels as part of the ASCD legislative committee. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Mary Washington College, a master’s degree in education from Old Dominion University, a master of education degree in educational leadership from University of Mary Washington and a doctorate in educational leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University. Among her awards and recognitions are the Jaycees Educator of the Year and the James Monroe High School Teacher of the Year.
“I want to thank the School Board for selecting me to lead ACPS and for being great collaborators as we have worked together during the current school year. I look forward to continuing our school division’s work on behalf of ACPS students and our school community,” said Interim Superintendent Dr. Melanie Kay-Wyatt. “Everything we do is for our students, and this is an exciting opportunity for us to reaffirm our commitment and support for all of our students in their social-emotional and academic success. In this search process and throughout this school year, we have heard the priorities, hopes and dreams of students, staff, families and community members. I look forward to continuing to work with our school leaders and staff to best serve our students and the ACPS community.”
The search process managed by McPherson & Jacobson was extensive and considered applicants from across the nation and engaged ACPS stakeholders to share their input through an online community survey in multiple languages and via face-to-face and virtual discussions with stakeholder groups to gather their views in December 2022 and January 2023. Updates and a timeline were provided to students, staff, families and community members. The consulting firm published reports online in February 2023 that shared stakeholder input gathered during this process about school division assets and challenges, as well as the characteristics sought in the division’s next permanent superintendent.
“The Board wants to thank everyone who engaged in this process and took the time to provide their input in the online survey and the stakeholder group discussions facilitated by the consultant. We are proud of how invested the community is in our schools, and we know that this community support not only benefits our students, but is an asset to our new superintendent and our leadership and staff,” said Alderton.
The terms of Kay-Wyatt’s four-year contract, ending on June 30, 2027, as ACPS superintendent include an annual salary of $265,000.
Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS) serves more than 15,700 students who hail from more than 119 countries and speak 124 languages. ACPS has 18 schools, including two middle schools, two K-8 schools, one pre-K school and the internationally recognized Alexandria City High School. ACPS is committed to putting racial equity at the heart of all decisions and ensuring that each and every student succeeds.
Updated—Feb. 2, 2023
Reports from McPherson & Jacobson, L.L.C Executive Recruitment and Development
- Stakeholder Input Report for ACPS
- Stakeholder Input Report for ACPS (Español)
- Stakeholder Questions (Español)
Updated—Jan. 25, 2023
McPherson & Jacobson, L.L.C Executive Recruitment and Development, the consultant engaged by the Alexandria City School Board in the search for a permanent superintendent, has developed this brochure about Alexandria City Public Schools to share with candidates who apply for the position.
Updated Jan. 17, 2023
Thank you to all stakeholders who participated in the survey and shared your input with the Alexandria School Board as we select a permanent superintendent.
Previous Message—Dec. 22, 2022
The stakeholder survey for input into the search for a permanent ACPS superintendent closed at midnight on Dec. 21, 2022
Previous Message—Dec. 9, 2022
The Alexandria School Board has begun the process for engaging in an intensive search for a new superintendent to lead our school system. McPherson & Jacobson, L.L.C Executive Recruitment and Development has been engaged as the consultant in the search and they will assist the School Board in identifying and screening candidates for the position.
We are moving forward at a very productive pace and have crafted a thorough and thoughtful process that will lead to the appointment of a new superintendent to guide our school division. Our goal is always to sustain and maintain a positive culture of learning by being student-oriented and data-driven.
As this process is underway, we will carry forward our mission and build on our strengths with the goal of appointing a permanent superintendent by the end of March 2023, in alignment with the timeline proposed below. The timeline includes opportunities for meaningful input from staff, families and the community. Your feedback will be encouraged and considered as we embark on the task of selecting the next superintendent to lead our ACPS community.
Interested parties may view the job description and application process (PDF). As always, thank you for your continued support of our collective ACPS community.
Dec. 9–Dec. 22, 2022
|Dec. 14 and 15, 2022||Discussions with high school students, Central Office staff and school staff, PTAC, Board advisory committees, city staff and leaders, community groups and leaders.|
Jan. 6–Jan. 15, 2023
Stakeholder survey reopened for additional feedback.
|Jan. 2023||Stakeholder report posted|
|Feb. 9, 2023||Closing date for applications|
|March 2023||Finalist interviews|
|April 2023||Selection of new superintendent|
|July 1, 2023||Permanent position begins|
Interim Superintendent Search
Alexandria City School Board Appoints Dr. Melanie Kay-Wyatt as Interim Superintendent
Updated July 28, 2022
The Alexandria City School Board today appointed Dr. Melanie Kay-Wyatt as the interim superintendent for Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS), effective Sept. 1, 2022, at a special called School Board meeting. Kay-Wyatt is currently the ACPS chief of human resources, having joined the school division in July 2021 and served previously as the ACPS acting chief of human resources and the executive director of human resources. She is the second Black female interim superintendent at ACPS.
Updated June 30, 2022
Superintendent Dr. Gregory C. Hutchings, Jr. has notified the Alexandria City School Board that he will resign from his position as the division-wide leader of Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS), effective August 31, 2022. As a result, the School Board and the ACPS community will be engaging in an intensive search for a new superintendent to lead our school system. We will move forward at the pace necessary for conducting a thorough and thoughtful process leading to the appointment of a new superintendent to guide our school division to continued success and sustain our positive culture of learning.
As this process is underway, we will carry forward our mission and build on our strengths with the goal of a July 28, 2022, appointment of an interim superintendent in alignment with the following proposed timeline. The timeline includes time designated for input from staff, families and the community. Your feedback will be encouraged and considered as an interim superintendent, who can support the transition throughout the new school year, is sought and as the search for Dr. Gregory C. Hutchings, Jr.’s permanent successor is conducted.
Interested applicants may apply from June 30, 2022 to July 8, 2022 (by 11:59 PM EST). Thank you for your continued support of our collective ACPS Community.