District appoints acting superintendent as search for new superintendent begins

January 22, 2014

The Ridge Meadows School District will see a reorganization of senior staff by the end of this month as Superintendent Jan Unwin leaves the district.

Unwin announced her intention to step down in late October, though at the time no further details about the date of her departure or her future plans were available.

“I felt great about what we’d achieved, and just knew it was time to step aside and let the district have a new voice,”Unwin said.

Unwin, who had been the Maple Ridge – Pitt Meadows superintendent of schools for the past five years, will be moving into a two-year appointment with the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Advanced Education as the Superintendent of Graduation and Student Transitions. “I will be able to continue working on behalf of kids, so I’m thrilled to have that opportunity,” she said.

Current deputy superintendent, Laurie Meston, will assume the role of acting superintendent starting Feb. 1, and will remain in this position until a new superintendent of schools is appointed. Meston has been with the Maple Ridge – Pitt Meadows School District for over twenty years, and has served in a variety of roles, including district principal and director of instruction, before being appointed to her current deputy superintendent role.

“The Board wanted to ensure that the district had a strong leadership team in place during the transition period,” said board chair Mike Murray. “As the current deputy superintendent, Laurie Meston was a natural choice for this temporary appointment. Her experience and expertise will give our district continuity as it searches for its next superintendent.”

The district has hired global executive search firm Boyden to undertake the search for its new superintendent of schools, and hopes to have the new CEO at the helm for the next school year.

“We have really put this district on the map, and have a solid, talented team in place,” Unwin said. “I know that I will be leaving the district in good hands.”

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