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New El Nido superintendent brings classroom, administrative experience

Lori Gonzalez
Lori Gonzalez

The El Nido community and its school are an incredible gem to Lori Gonzalez, the new superintendent-principal of the El Nido School District.

Gonzalez took on her new role Aug. 13, replacing Rae Ann Jimenez as superintendent. The El Nido district has 159 students from transitional kindergarten through eighth grade and 26 staff members, including nine teachers.

“It’s a welcome change for me,” Gonzalez said. “El Nido is such an incredible gift to me. I am excited to start a new career path. You can see the love they have for the students. Everyone is just so welcoming.”

Gonzalez, 50, said her goal is to serve the needs of the students and move the district forward to the 21st Century.

“I’m looking at making sure we meet the needs of all the students and implement the right programs and instructional strategies. I want to ensure our students are college and career-ready and ensure our teachers are fully equipped to provide the best instruction for students,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez started her educational career in 1992; she taught kindergarten for three years and third grade for six years with the Selma Unified School District.

For three years Gonzalez was a teacher on special assignment, covering reading programs. She then became program manager of curriculum, instruction and funding at Lincoln Middle School for three years.

In 2006, Gonzalez became vice principal at Sutter Middle School in Fowler, holding that position for two years until becoming principal at the same site for four years.

Later Gonzalez was promoted to director of Educational Services and promoted again to associate superintendent. In this role she focused on data assessment, funding, construction along with curriculum and instruction.

From April to August Gonzalez was interim superintendent of the district before accepting the El Nido superintendency.

Born in Mexico, Gonzalez was raised in Sanger. A 1986 graduate of Sanger High School, she received her bachelor’s degree in 1991 from California State University, Fresno and her master’s degree there five years later. Her concentration was English language arts, with a reading specialist credential.

Her educational philosophy calls for serving students and providing them a path for success.

Gonzalez and her husband Leonel have three grown children from 19 to 27 years of age.

“I feel very appreciative of the board members who believe in my philosophy of education and am excited to work alongside them,” Gonzalez said.

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