The Centennial Board of School Directors is pleased to announce that on Tuesday, July 28, 2020, the Board voted to approve Dr. Dana Bedden as the next Superintendent of Schools for the Centennial School District.
The Centennial Board of School Directors began the search process for a new Superintendent in April 2020, after receiving the resignation of then Superintendent Dr. David Baugh. The Board began by conducting a survey of all community members to determine what District stakeholders were looking for in their new superintendent. The community responded with their opinions, goals, and priorities for the role. Over 800 responses were received. 25 candidates applied for the position, and 14 were selected by the Board for initial interviews. Seven candidates advanced to the second round, and two to the final round. The final round of interviews included not only the Board of School Directors but representatives from the Centennial School Community. They were:
Melissa Rueger – Region I
Tony Sadowski- Region II
Jennifer Taylor — Region III
Heather Stek – CEA (Centennial Education Association)
Dr. Catherine Perkins – Administration Representative
The Support staff representative was unable to attend the meeting.
With over 27 years of experience in administrative and educational leadership, Dr. Bedden has developed a results-oriented reputation for improving academic performance, working with diverse groups, increasing community/business engagement, implementing systems-thinking, and providing a positive school and work environment. He has demonstrated effective leadership skills in but not limited to standards and performance-based practices, human resource management, fiscal management, and community/business partnerships. Throughout his career, he has focused on improving efforts to serve the whole-student by empowering staff, improving academic program offerings, equity of access, and supporting students’ career and technical education preparation to help them become college, career, and life ready. For 17 years of his career, he has had the privilege to serve as a Regional (Area) Superintendent or District Superintendent of Schools in Pennsylvania, Georgia, Texas, and Virginia serving majority Caucasian, African-American, and Hispanic student populations ranging from 5500 to 200,000 students, 750 to 5000 employees, overseeing 10 to 58 campuses, with budgets between $72 million to $500 million. Dr. Bedden has served on several advisory committees and as an adjunct faculty member at several institutions of higher education, teaching course(s) in educational leadership related to school law, principal preparation/certification, superintendent preparation/certification, teaching, and learning.
He holds a doctorate in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech), a master’s degree in Educational Administration from Pennsylvania State University (Penn State), and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida. He also completed Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education Leadership Institute for Superintendents and post-doctoral courses in School Business Leadership at Wilkes University.
In 2018, he began his tenure as the Superintendent of Boyertown Area School District in Pennsylvania where he is leading the school district’s efforts to meet the needs of a changing school district, fiscal challenges and system’s thinking while also maintaining an academic performance that meets or exceeds the current performance standards outlined by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Over the past two years, Dr. Bedden has been able to negotiate a new contract with the teachers union successfully, a new contract with the district bus service provider, settle the unresolved stadium renovations, lead the district through a facility rightsizing/boundary rezoning process, and end the fiscal year with a budget excess, the first in the past few years. The work in Boyertown also includes efforts to introduce and implement social-emotional learning and trauma-informed schools. He is a steering committee member and instructional facilitator for AASA/Howard University Urban Superintendents Academy.
His education career also includes service as a High School Principal, Sub school Principal, Director of Athletics, and middle school teacher. He has extensive experience serving on local, state, and national committees, boards of community and business organizations as well as several professional associations. Dr. Bedden has been a keynote presenter, panelist, panel host, guest columnist, radio show participant, educational consultant, and advisor for several organizations across the nation on a variety of educational and leadership topics. He has published, contributed, or been featured in several professional and local publications or newspapers such as Phi Delta Kappa, Executive Education, District Administrator, SMARTBUSINESS, Reading Eagle, and Comcast Newsmakers, and others.
Dr. Bedden Statement
Upon being offered the position of Superintendent, Dr. Bedden, current Superintendent in the Boyertown School District, stated, “It is an honor to be extended an opportunity to work collaboratively with the Centennial School District (CSD) School Board in establishing a clear education vision that is student and safety centered. I believe my over twenty-seven years of education experience, serving in a variety of positions could help me to work with the school board in providing the staff and students with a focused and aligned teaching and learning program where students can find success through academics, athletics, and the arts while serving the CSD community. It is also truly encouraging to have read the resolution released by CSD which publicly acknowledges a responsibility to speak against injustice, racial inequity, and to foster an equitable and inclusive environment for every student, staff member, parent, and community member.”
Statement , Andrew Dixon, CSD Board President
Andrew Dixon, Centennial School Board President stated, “As Board President, I am extremely excited to be able to bring in a superintendent of Dr. Bedden’s caliber and track record. Everywhere he has been, he has helped districts to align instruction for improved educational focus and results. More, he has done so while being a champion of striving for equity in educational outcomes, which is both an area of strength for our district and a key continued goal in Centennial, given the economic and social diversity of our communities and our students. He also has a significant track record of driving this work while simultaneously being a responsible fiscal manager of the taxpayer’s dollars, something that the Board takes seriously as our collective responsibility. Finally, in this time of extreme crisis, I felt it important to bring in someone with executive experience in challenging circumstances, which is a key feature of Dr. Bedden’s résumé. With Dr. Bedden and his years of experience here to lead, I anticipate being able to face and overcome the significant challenge presented by COVID to our ability to continue to deliver top-quality instruction, and, once the COVID crisis has been met and passed, to consolidate and advance further the gains we have made in our district through a tight focus on core educational goals for all students.”