|Division Executive Staff
|Superintendent - Dr. Rita Bishop
Dr. Rita D. Bishop has served as Superintendent of Schools since her return to Roanoke on August 1, 2007, after having served for three years as Superintendent of Schools in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
Dr. Bishop served as Associate Superintendent for Instruction in Roanoke City Schools from 1994-2004. Prior to her arrival in Roanoke in 1994, Dr. Bishop was employed in the San Jose, California school division from 1969 to 1994 serving as teacher, counselor, vice principal, principal, interim director of personnel, administrator of special programs, and assistant superintendent for educational services.
Dr. Bishop holds a doctor of education in educational policy planning and administration from the University of Southern California, a master of arts in counseling psychology from the University of Santa Clara, and a bachelor of arts in English and speech from the University of Nevada.
Dr. Bishop’s career in education has resulted in numerous accomplishments. She is a recipient of the American Association of School Administrators Forrest E. Conner scholarship; a two-year University of Southern California Dean’s Off-Campus Scholar; recipient of the University of Southern California Dissertation Award of Merit; and the Roanoke YWCA 2004 Educator of the Year.
Dr. Bishop is actively involved in the community participating on the boards of such organizations as the United Way, Chamber of Commerce, Foundation for Roanoke Valley, Roanoke Symphony, and Opera Roanoke.
Her focus as Superintendent is school safety; effective instruction, empowered teachers, and innovative curriculum; open and honest communication and development of an effective learning organization; increased graduation rate; and a school division known for management excellence and elegance.
Assistant Superintendent for Teaching and Learning - Dr. Vella Wright
Dr. Vella Wright has strong connections to the Roanoke City Public Schools as a student (graduate of William Fleming Class of 1968), as a mathematics teacher and department chair (Patrick Henry High School and Roanoke Valley Governor's School, 1983-84 and 1986-87 respectively), and as a central office leader (ten years as mathematics supervisor, eleven years as director of research, testing and evaluation, and one year as executive director for human resources.)
Dr. Wright has both Bachelor of Arts (James Madison University, 1972) and Masters Degree (Radford University, 1978) in mathematics and she was awarded her doctorate in educational administration from Virginia Tech in 1998. Her published dissertation was entitled Breaking the Time Barrier: Algebra Instruction in an Alternate Day Block Schedule.
In addition to her teaching experiences in Virginia (Botetourt County and Roanoke City) and in Tennessee (Knoxville), Dr. Wright has served as a mathematics specialist in the academic review process through the Office for School Improvement, Virginia Department of Education and she has served as adjunct professor for the Mathematics Specialist program of the University of Virginia through the Roanoke Higher Education Center.
Deputy Superintendent for Operations - Mr. Curt Baker
Mr. Curt Baker earned his Bachelors degree from University of Southern California (Economics, Sociology and International Relations), where he graduated Summa Cum Laude. Mr. Baker has a Masters from The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University (Economics, Political Analysis and International Law).
Earlier in his career, Mr. Baker served as a negotiator for Conoco, a global oil company, as a management consultant, and as the Chief Financial Officer for the School District of Lancaster in Pennsylvania.
The department of Human Resources plans , develops and implements and organizational structure that promotes and supports success for all children through a system of shared decision making. The department also periodically guides comprehensive classification and compensation reviews, and provides an orderly system of compensation administration. The executive director develops strategic recruitment plans to include networking with outstanding institutions of higher education. The Human Resources department also provides support and facilitates organizational changes mandated by RCPS management.
Executive Director for 6 - 12 Instruction - Dr. Julie Drewry
Executive Director for K-5 Education - Mr. Seydric Williams
The Executive Director of K-5 articulates the missions, goals and objectives of RCPS to the elementary school communities. The Executive Director also provides leadership to the K-5 communities and their principals and assistant principals. The role of the Executive Director is to monitor the achievement of the Virginia Standards of Learning and ensure that all schools have necessary supplies, equipment, and instructional materials.
Executive Director for Student Support Services - Ms. Asia Jones
Coordinator for Community Relations - Mr. Justin McLeod
The primary role of the Department of Community Relations is to increase internal and external understanding, involvement and support of the goals of the school division through communication, relationship building, training and recognition.
Director for Research, Testing, and Evaluation - Ms. Jean Pollock
The department of testing coordinates the implementation of the state testing system for Roanoke City Public Schools. The department also evaluates and revises on a continuing basis the division’s testing methods and procedures to develop and maintain the best educational programs for the division. In addition, the director of testing is responsible for interpretation of the guidelines for No Child Left Behind to ensure necessary preparations for test administration and proper analysis of test results.
Executive Assistant to Superintendent and School Board Clerk - Mrs. Cindy Poulton
Mrs. Poulton has served as Executive Assistant to the Superintendent and School Board Clerk since July 1996. Prior to employment with Roanoke City Public Schools, she worked for 18 years as an executive assistant with Roanoke Memorial Hospitals. Mrs. Poulton holds the Certified Professional Secretary (CPS) designation and an associate degree from Virginia Western Community College. Responsible for day-to-day management of Superintendent's office functions and administrative support to the seven-member School Board.