The chief of staff advises and supports the superintendent on day-to-day matters and creates a culture of high expectations that result in accelerated student achievement and improved school performance.
The chief of staff serves as a liaison between the superintendent and various internal and external stakeholders groups. The chief of staff also provides executive assistance to the superintendent in supporting and ensuring effective communication with the Board of Education, both as a group and as individuals. This support encompasses a wide range of key responsibilities with a goal of ensuring that the Board has all background information necessary to make decisions relative to the direction of the district.
The chief of staff monitors and facilitates the progress of staff-led projects and initiatives, and is attuned to the concerns and positions of community individuals and groups relative to district activities and plans.
The Finance Division is the principle organizational entity responsible to the Superintendent relative to the long and short-term financial preparedness of the School District. The division consist of the major departments of Purchasing, Payroll, Budgeting, Accounting, Accounts Payable and Systems.
Monika Davis is currently the Chief Information Officer of DeKalb County School District, which has over 118,000 technology users. Ms. Davis started her career in the DeKalb County School District as a technology paraprofessional at Murphy Candler Elementary school in 1994. She has spent all 26 years of her vast career in educational technology working closely with all areas of Information Technology. Prior to her role as a district leader, Monika held many positions ranging from technician to school technology specialist to district-level instructional technology specialist.
Ms. Davis’s graduate education includes a Master of Science degree in Instructional Technology and a Master of Education degree in Educational Leadership both from Georgia State University as well as an Education Specialist Degree in Instructional Technology from Kennesaw State University. Her interest in technology started as a student at Redan High School in Stone Mountain, Georgia where she excelled in coding, computer math, and graphics design. Upon graduation from Redan High School, Ms. Davis attended Georgia Institute of Technology where she studied Computer Science for three years. As fate would have it, K – 12 education beaconed changing her career and higher education trajectory.
Ms. Davis has worked with local school districts as an employee and consultant including DeKalb County, Fulton County, and Atlanta Public. She also has industry experience providing technical support and technology-related instructional design for businesses both stateside and abroad. She has facilitated multiple sessions covering various educational technology topics with collaborative learning groups, such as the Explorer’s Guild, Tech and Learning, and The Learning Counsel. Ms. Davis is also no novice to the technology conference circuit, having served as presenter, panelist, steering committee member, and keynote speaker for events such as Georgia Educational Technology Conference, International Society of Technology in Education Conference, and RTM CIO Congress.
Being a life-long learner is critical in a field as dynamic and constantly evolving as information technology. Ms. Davis embraces this challenge and believes it is her job to empower stakeholders by connecting the dots between information technology and education through leadership, strategic planning and execution, and ongoing advocacy. Ms. Davis is currently fixated on continuing the district’s digital transformation journey with a focus on enhancing security and operational effectiveness.
The Information Technology department comprises of customer service-oriented professionals dedicated to the integration and implementation of technology across Dekalb County School District. Our goal is to expand the walls of the classroom by providing access to information and programs anytime, anywhere for anyone in a 21st century learning environment.
Our job is to facilitate unique collaborative partnerships between our customers – students, teachers, staff, parents and the community. The results are improved student achievement and optimum business processes, to establish and maintain a technology-rich teaching and learning environment where students and staff develop 21st century skills to be successful citizens in a global community.
As the Chief Operations Officer for the Dekalb County School District, Mr. D. Benjamin Estill II provides leadership and support for the Operations Division. As a member of the cabinet, Mr. Estill participates in strategic planning, community interaction, capital programming and budgeting. Mr. Estill’s work in the Operations Division includes facilities planning, capital project management, maintenance, facilities services, transportation, and fleet services.
Mr. Estill works collaboratively with school and district leaders to create the best possible learning environments for students and teachers through his leadership in operations. He also fosters this collaboration with school and community stakeholders to support the school system from a district wide perspective.
The Division of Operations exists to provide exemplary support services to enhance student growth and achievement.
We believe in fostering innovative, process driven strategies which utilize best practices and values customer satisfaction, creating and maintaining a safe and productive work environment, and promoting deep collaboration and spurring continuous improvement throughout our entire organization.
Dr. Michelle Jones serves as the Interim Chief Human Resource Officer for DeKalb Schools. Dr. Jones is committed in service leadership to the children of DeKalb County schools. She has served 23 years in roles as Teacher, Department Chair, Assistant Principal and Principal prior to her most former appointment as Regional Superintendent.
From the beginning as a classroom teacher in mathematics at Redan High school, where she graduated, to that of a teacher leader at Miller Grove High School, Dr. Jones always focused on student performance. Recognized for her ability to bring together disparate points of view toward finding workable solutions to instructional issues, she was named Assistant Principal at Chamblee Charter High School. Her contributions to improved student performance there included making student-focused decisions, coordinating AP testing, which at that time was the largest in the district.
In 2010, she was selected by the Superintendent as the Turnaround Principal for Clarkston High School. Dr. Jones had the challenge of closing the achievement gap for students representing 47 languages who had to learn both the disciplinary academic standards as well as become fluent in the English language. She met that challenge. During her eight-year tenure, Clarkston showed marked improvement in all phases of student performance-academic, athletic, and the arts. Under Dr. Jones’s leadership, Clarkston earned the Model Insight School recognition and the Silver Award issued by the Georgia Governor’s Office (GOSA) for student achievement.
This same transformational leadership style Dr. Jones brings to her current position, Regional Superintendent. She makes data-driven decisions, articulates clearly goals and consistently follows-up with these goals in order to ensure quality implementation. Dr. Jones will model a lesson for a teacher, model for her coaches how to analyze data, and stand firm to support a child in need, all essential to support increased student performance.
For her leadership efforts, Dr. Jones has been recognized by peers and district leaders as the Region and then district Principal of the Year in 2016.
Dr. Jones received her Bachelor and Master degrees in Mathematics Education from the University of Georgia and PhD in Educational Leadership from Mercer University.
Her family is based in the DeKalb community. Her husband Ron is a graduate from a DeKalb school and her children Kristen, Ronald, and Kelly attend DeKalb schools. Camille is a recent graduate of DeKalb.
The Division of Human Resources provides support services for employees and applicants of the DeKalb County School District. Our Mission is to attract, retain, and support our high quality team members.
We are responsible for the full life-cycle of employee human resource needs including: recuitment, hiring, certification, compensation and classification, benefits, and absence management.
Mr. Oliver J. Lewis, III has served the students in the DeKalb County School District since 1993, beginning his career as a substitute teacher. He also served as an elementary and middle grades teacher for seven years between Avondale and Forest Hills schools. After a successful tenure as teacher, he began his service as an Assistant Principal at Terry Mill Elementary School and Narvie J. Harris Traditional Theme School. On April 1, 2005, Mr. Lewis began his tenure as the principal of Hightower Elementary School, where he served for almost nine amazing years with a cohesive team of dedicated educators focused on closing the equity and achievement gaps of a beautifully diverse student population. While serving as principal, the school achieved at levels unrivaled by many schools, statewide. Hightower served the District and state as a model school for instructional practices in the areas of Literacy, Mathematics, English Learner education, standards-based teaching and STEM. Hightower was one of two Title-funded schools in GA to achieve Adequate Yearly Progress performance measures for 13 consecutive years, dispelling narratives related to socio-economic and language proficiency dynamics.
Mr. Lewis joined the Professional Learning Department as Director in 2013. He subsequently served as Executive Director of Professional Learning, Leadership Development, STEM and Educational Media. Based on a great team concept and great team leaders, the various departments experienced great success in supporting the District’s educators and staff, at scale, as well as supporting 28 school-based STEM certifications, which places the District as an international leader in STEM education.
Mr. Lewis currently serves as the Associate Superintendent with The Office of Accountability and School Improvement, which oversees all school improvement processes, assessment functions, federal programs, data and research, teacher and leader development, and strategic planning. The Division is comprised of an amazing team of proven leaders.
Oliver holds a Business Administration and Marketing degree from Morehouse College; a Master’s degree in Education from Clark Atlanta University; and a Specialist’s degree in Educational Leadership from The University of West Georgia.
He matriculated as a proud student within Atlanta Public Schools and graduated from Benjamin Elijah Mays High School.
Oliver is married to a phenomenal leader who serves as principal, and they are parents to two amazing daughters and two wonderful sons.
He also enjoys creating virtually anything from internal systems focused on improvement to various forms of artistic expression.
Dr. Deborah Moore-Sanders is the Interim Deputy Superintendent, Student Support & Intervention for the DeKalb County School District.
Dr. Moore-Sanders is a veteran educator with more than 25 years of public education experience. She was appointed as the Interim- Deputy Superintendent for Student Support and Intervention and has served the DeKalb County School District as School Psychologist, Coordinator of Clinical Services, Director of Student Support Services, and Executive Director for Culture and Climate. Prior to returning to DeKalb County School District, Dr. Moore-Sanders worked for the Houston County Board of Education for 10 years serving as Student Support Services Coordinator and Elementary School Principal. She was announced as the first principal of CB Watson Primary School, which served military and students from low-income households.
Dr. Moore-Sanders served on the Executive Board for the Student Support Team for Georgia Educators (SSTAGE) for 8 years and authored several articles focusing on improving students’ reading and writing skills. She has experience as an adjunct professor and worked as part of an interdisciplinary team at Emory University’s Center for Learning and Attention Deficit Disorders. Dr. Moore-Sanders has extensive experience fostering community partnerships, has presented at national conferences, and currently serves on the Executive Board for two non-profit organizations.
The Division of Student Support and Intervention is comprised of individuals committed to providing support to help students successfully navigate their school career and the world beyond. Included in this division are the departments of Student Support, Student Relations, Public Safety, Athletics, School Choice Options/Student Assignment, English Language Learners, and Student Advancement.
The Division provides support to school administration, staff, family and community stakeholders in an effort to identify and help mitigate academic, affective and societal factors that could potentially impede the academic success of all students.
Stacy E. Stepney, Chief Academic Officer, supports and offers guidance to all district level staff, local school staff, parents/guardians, students, and community stakeholders. As the Chief Academic Officer, she analyzes formative and summative data, conducts formal and informal learning walks, collaborates with educators to make instructional adjustments, facilitates professional development trainings and workshops, and shares curricula updates and research-based practices to improve student performance outcomes. She fosters a culture that focuses on student learning, high expectations, innovation, and collaboration.
Ms. Stepney began her career in 1993 as a long-term substitute in science at Dunwoody High School. Throughout her professional career at Dunwoody High School for 15 years, she was a substitute, paraprofessional, teacher, assistant principal, interim principal, and principal. In 2002 at the age of 31, Stacy was named principal; she was the youngest principal in the DeKalb County School System at that time. Ms. Stepney served as principal at Dunwoody High School for six years.
Ms. Stepney joined the Division of Curriculum and Instruction in 2008 as the Director for High School Instruction. Over the last ten years, Ms. Stepney has focused on teaching and learning while serving as the Director for Electives and Special Programs, Executive Director for Curriculum and Instruction, Associate Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, and Interim Chief Academic Officer. In May 2018, Ms. Stepney was appointed Chief Academic Officer.
In an effort to stay abreast of best teaching practices consistent with educational trends, Stacy is a member of ASCD (formerly the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development) and the Professional Association of Georgia Educators (PAGE). She is also an active member of Alpha Delta Kappa, an international honorary organization for women educators.
Ms. Stepney is a native of Grenada, Mississippi. She graduated from Southwest DeKalb High School in 1989 as the co-valedictorian of the class. Stacy furthered her education by earning a Bachelor of Science in Biology and minor in Chemistry from Xavier University of Louisiana in 1993. She graduated with honors in English, math, and history. She continued her graduate studies at Georgia State University in 2000 and earned a Master of Education in Educational Leadership. Also, Ms. Stepney attended the Harvard Public Education Leadership Project, a summer leadership institute sponsored by the Harvard Graduate School of Education and Harvard Business School.
Melanie Pearch is the Region I Superintendent for DeKalb County School District. She started her educational career in DeKalb County School District in 1994 as a Spanish teacher at Redan High School. She continued as a Spanish teacher at both Redan and Stephenson High, where she also coached softball and sponsored numerous extra-curricular activities. She improved her Spanish skills each summer by living with native families and taking intensive language courses throughout South and Central America.
In 2001, she transitioned to an administrative role at Cary Reynolds Elementary School. She remained in the Cross Keys cluster for 15 years serving as principal of Cary Reynolds and Woodward Elementary. During this time, she earned recognitions of Superintendent’s Excellence in Parental Involvement, Department of Education Outstanding Achievement School, Title I Distinguished School, Title I High Progress School, Georgia Family Friendly School, and Region I Principal of the Year. She transferred to Kingsley Elementary in the Dunwoody cluster in 2016. Her focus has always been on developing leaders and “doing the right thing, even when no one is looking”.
Originally from New England, Mrs. Pearch graduated from the University of Rhode Island and earned her Master’s degree from Georgia State University. She currently resides in Region I with her husband and two middle school children.
Region I Micro Cabinet
Region I Superintendent | Melanie Pearch Coordinator III | Beth Kyle Coordinator II | David Johnson Executive Assistant | Joyce Johnson-Fulton HR Manager K-12 | Julie Fincher HR K-12 Secretary | Cynthia McKenzie Technology | Laura Crate Facilities Maintenance Manager I | Demetrice Mott Finance | Yolanda Neal Regional Transportation Manager | Harold Lewis
Trenton Arnold is a second-generation graduate from the DeKalb County School District’s decommissioned Avondale High School. He began his career with the District teaching Language Arts to Grade 6 students at Fairington Elementary School before middle schools became fully operational in DeKalb. Once Grade 6 students moved to middle schools, he transitioned to Stone Mountain Middle School to work in the same content area and grade level. In 1999, he became an Assistant Principal at Cedar Grove Middle School and then Assistant Principal for Instruction at McNair Middle School.
In 2005, Mr. Arnold became Principal of Sequoyah Middle School where he served for four years and then went to work as Principal at Stone Mountain Middle School for almost two years. After serving as Principal, Mr. Arnold was the Executive Director for Research, Assessment, and Grants where he led the District in meeting requirements associated with state assessments and accountability. He then became a Regional Superintendent for Region III before beginning his work with the schools in Region II in 2014.
Mr. Arnold received his undergraduate degree in English from Presbyterian College in Clinton, SC, and his master’s degree in Educational Leadership from the University of Georgia.
He enjoys spending his free time with his wife, Christy, and his two daughters, Lauren and Molly.
Dr. Sean R. Tartt is a native of Georgia and is a product of DeKalb. As a college student, in the summers, he worked as a paraprofessional, long term substitute teacher, and warehouse office supply clerk. This fueled his fire to become a teacher at Narvie J. Harris Traditional Theme School (4yrs.), 9th grade boy’s head basketball coach and assistant varsity boy’s basketball coach at Tucker HS (1yr.), assistant principal at Lithonia Middle School (4yrs.), principal at Narvie J. Harris Traditional Theme School (11yrs.). In 2014, Dr. Tartt was named the Region IV Principal of the Year. Dr. Tartt was promoted to serve as the Region III Superintendent in June of 2018.
Dr. Tartt received a Bachelor of Science in Health & Physical Education and Masters Degree in Educational Leadership from Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University. He received his Specialist in 2005 and Doctorate in 2008 in Educational Leadership from Argosy University in Atlanta. Dr. Tartt was awarded the Outstanding Citizen Award from the Secretary of State in February of 2009 and in December of 2009. He has likewise received other awards, recognitions, and acknowledgement such as: Proclamation for Outstanding Service, Scholarship, and Leadership 2009 for the United States House of Representatives, the Governor’s Outstanding Contribution to Education in 2009, and the DeKalb Commissioner’s Community Service Award in 2002.
As a vibrant instructional, organizational, and forward-thinking leader, Dr. Tartt spends a great deal of his time learning and strengthening the educational toolboxes of others. Within his roles of administration, he has been sought to serve as a district hearing officer, instructional assistant principals’ and principals’ advisory member, and principal mentor. He is known for being a “hands on” type of leader and having strong ties in the community. He follows and mentors students as they matriculate from elementary to adulthood. Dr. Tartt is an established presenter of numerous educational topics as well as an extraordinary motivational speaker. He is a member of Phi Delta Kappa, DeKalb Administrators’ Association, and other civic organizations. He thoroughly enjoys sports, community events, and working outside in the yard. In all that he does, he leads, learns, and lives by Benjamin Franklin’s quote, “If better is possible, good is not enough”.
Dr. Antonette Campbell is the Interim Region IV Superintendent for the DeKalb County School District and has served as a teacher, Assistant Principal, Principal and District Leader for the DeKalb County School District for 27 years. Notably, she was named Principal of the Year in 2015 for Region IV, and promoted to Instructional Coordinator in 2018. She is currently serving as Interim Regional Superintendent for Region IV and is committed to supporting schools and ensuring that students graduate from high school college and career ready.
Dr. Triscilla Weaver has twenty-five years of educational experience with the DeKalb County School District. Her experience includes nine years as a classroom teacher, three years as an assistant principal, eleven years as a principal and she was named Region IV Superintendent on April 1, 2015. Prior to becoming Regional Superintendent, Dr. Weaver served as principal of Mary McLeod Bethune Middle School. Under her leadership, Mary McLeod Bethune Middle School received the honor of being named a Title I High-Progress School. This honor is given to the top 10% of Title I schools in the state that made the most progress in improving the performance of all student subgroups over a three year period of time on the statewide assessment.
As an instructional leader, Dr. Weaver spends a great deal of her time strengthening the instructional capacity of others. She works with teachers and school leaders in the areas of data analysis, effective teaching strategies, differentiated instruction, and effective classroom rituals and routines for academic success. She currently serves as one of the co-chairs for the CIA2 Committee, which is dedicated to building instructional capacity in building leaders in the areas of curriculum, instruction, assessment and accountability.
Dr. Weaver received a Bachelor of Science in Education, Master of Education and Specialist in Education from Georgia State University. She also earned her Ph.D. from Georgia State University in Teaching and Learning with a concentration in mathematics. Her Dissertation topic was: “A Case Study of Two Master Teachers of Mathematics of African American Males.” Dr. Weaver has received several outstanding community service awards and is a former DeKalb County’s Middle School Teacher of the Year.
Dr. Rodney Swanson is Region VII Superintendent of DeKalb County School District.
Dr. Swanson is a dynamic servant leader who believes that every student is capable of educational excellence with support and a solid educational foundation. His educational philosophy includes creating a rigorous learning environment that allows students to make real world connections through creative educational experiences.
Dr. Swanson began his career in the DeKalb County School District in 1992 as a paraprofessional at Chapel Hill Middle School. He diligently worked his way to teacher at Stone Mountain Middle School, to assistant principal at DeKalb School of the Arts and then Redan High School, to principal at Dunwoody High School and most recently at Arabia Mountain High School.
Dr. Swanson received his Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership from Mercer University in 2015, Master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Jacksonville State University in 2001, and his Bachelor’s in Marketing from the University of Georgia in 1989.
He was named Outstanding Administrator of the Year for the Technology Student Association of Georgia for the 2018-2019 school year, Region IV Principal of the Year for the 2015-2016 school year, Atlanta Urban Debate League Principal of the Year for the 2014-2015 school year, and the 2002 Teacher of the Year for Stone Mountain Middle School.
Dr. Swanson is married with two sons, and enjoys exercising, reading, sports, family activities, and changing the lives of students.
He is excited for this opportunity to serve Region VII.