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Dr. Ross Kasun Named 2017 Superintendent of the Year

NJASA
 
 NEW JERSEY ASSOCIATION OF SCHOOL ADMINISTRATORS
Press Release:
Contact Anne H. Gallagher
NJASA Director of Communications
609-599-2900, ext. 126
agallagher@njasa.net   
 

DR. ROSS KASUN NAMED 2017 SUPERINTENDENT OF THE YEAR

Kasun

The 2017 New Jersey Superintendent of the Year Dr. Ross Kasun is available to comment on Education-Related Issues.

Trenton, New Jersey, December 14, 2016 ... Dr. Ross Kasun, Chief Education Officer, Freehold Township School District, was selected New Jersey's 2017 candidate for the American Association of School Administrators' (AASA) National Superintendent of the Year Award by the New Jersey Association of School Administrators (NJASA).

The 2017 New Jersey Superintendent of the Year Dr. Ross Kasun was recognized by the New Jersey State Board of Education at a recent Recognition Ceremony, at the New Jersey Department of Education’s headquarters in Trenton.

The NJASA procedure names three regional – Northern, Central, and Southern – Superintendent of the Year winners prior to selection of the State Superintendent of the Year. Kasun was selected the NJASA Central Regional Superintendent of the Year.

The two other regional Superintendents of the Year joining Kasun are: Northern Regional winner – Dr. Adam Fried, Chief Education Officer, Harrington Park School District; and Southern Regional Winner - Dr. H. Major Poteat, Chief Education Officer, Winslow Township School District. All three regional Superintendents of the Year were introduced at the NJASA Executive Committee’s October 26th meeting at the Annual Fall Workshop in Atlantic City.

NJASA Executive Director Dr. Richard G. Bozza said, "Ross Kasun is a dedicated, hard-working professional who continually strives to improve the quality of education for all students. He is a remarkable chief education officer with vision, imagination, and compassion for the students he serves."

In accepting this prestigious honor, Dr. Kasun said, "This is truly a team effort and an awesome recognition for the Freehold Township Schools."

Kasun, a strong proponent of servant leadership - the focus of his dissertation, stated, "I admire and support the famous quote of our 33rd U.S. President Harry S. Truman, 'It’s amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.'"

The servant leadership approach is one that Kasun tries to exemplify while striving to support every individual in his organization to reach and perform at his/her best.  Under his tutelage, the Freehold Township School District has initiated a blended and personalized learning approach with students being leaders of their own learning.

Dr. Kasun, from his vantage point of 15 plus years experience as a school administrator, is most proud of fostering "leadership for learning" by developing, coaching and mentoring the district’s team of principals, assistant principals and supervisors. His leadership encouraged the team to be innovators, take risks, and develop personalized pilots in their schools that impact student learning.  As Dr. Kasun reflected back upon the work, he shared components that shaped his team’s mindset and have allowed them to drive change in the district at an astonishing rate.  While several elements played a role, Dr. Kasun shared one that was pivotal - Most Likely to Succeed (MLTS), “MLTS painted the picture of possibilities in our district as it skillfully portrayed the “why” for change. The documentary’s message, each time we shared it, grew discourse amongst our stakeholders. From discourse arose our pilots and projects that have (and continue to) reshape and reframe our schools. It provided a compelling rationale on the new thinking needed for our schools and generated a wave of excitement across the district.”

While the achievement gap and trying to find better ways to meet all students needs are not new, strategically planning and implementing Personalized Learning takes new thinking and approaches to instruction in order to ensure the success of all students. As evidenced, Dr. Kasun’s work has targeted the district’s approach to education to be a data driven, technology infused, personalized approach to bring about accelerated growth for all students.

He was chosen to participate in the first cohort for the Lexington Education Leadership Award (LELA) Award for his efforts to use technology to foster personalized learning. This six-month Fellowship and partnership with Education Elements helped create a vision and plan that has transformed learning throughout the district.

The 2017 NJ Superintendent of the Year showcased the Freehold Township School District’s, efforts to improve homework practices, at the ASCD Leadership Forum, which is a selective leadership conference promoting best practices.

Dr. Kasun, a prolific writer and presenter, is the founding superintendent of Open Mic On Education. In recognition of his district initiative to move homework to a meaningful home learning experience, he authored an article regarding the district's journey that was published in School Leader; presented at NJASA/NJASBO/NJSBA Annual Fall Workshop, the National School Boards Conference, Common Ground Conference, Building Learning Communities Conference; and a webinar for Education Week.

The 2017 New Jersey Superintendent of the Year was appointed the Chief Education Officer of the Freehold Township School District in August 2011. Previously, he served as the Chief Education Officer of the Colts Neck School District and Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction of the Summit Public Schools. He began his administrative career as Principal of the Seth Boyden Demonstration School in South Orange School District and then as Principal of the Glenwood Elementary School in the Millburn School District.

Dr. Kasun, an adjunct professor at St. Peter’s University, teaches doctoral statistics and serves as dissertation chairperson and committee member for several doctoral students. He also serves on an advisory board working to establish an Executive Doctoral Program for Education Leadership at Monmouth University.

A Middletown resident, he earned his Doctorate in Educational Administration and Supervision from Seton Hall University. He received both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Seton Hall University and obtained a second master’s from Rutgers University in Administration and Supervision.

AASA will announce the National Superintendent of the Year at its Annual Conference on Education in March 2017. The recipient of this prestigious honor will receive a $10,000 college scholarship for a student at the high school where the superintendent graduated.

 

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About NJASA:
The New Jersey Association of School Administrators is an organization of chief education officers and school administrators who lead school districts in New Jersey’s 21 counties. The Association’s mission is to ensure a superior statewide system of education. Through ongoing professional training and education, the Association shares knowledge among its members about best practices from both educational and administrative perspectives. Its goal is to move education forward by ensuring the highest quality of instruction for all New Jersey children. The Association is located at 920 West State Street, Trenton, New Jersey 08618-5328. For more information -- PH: 609.599.2900 / Fax: 609.599.9359 / website: www.njasa.net.
 
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