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State Student Leadership Award

Superintendent Smith receives state student leadership award

The Washington Association of School Administrators awarded Superintendent Dr. Wade Smith with the Student Achievement Leadership award for the Southeast region during its annual meeting in Richland June 9.

This award is presented to WASA members who have provided leadership for the implementation of an innovation that has resulted in measurable growth in student achievement. The innovation serves as a tool for modeling new programs.

Dr. Smith spearheaded the development of an inclusive and comprehensive strategic planning process when he arrived in 2016. Built on a foundation of stakeholder voice and equity, the plan incorporated a “We All Belong Here” vision that prioritized quality instruction, aligned systems, student supports and community partnerships. Under his leadership, graduation rates have soared to all-time highs, from 80.4% to 91.7%. Additionally, the district has virtually eliminated the graduation gap between student populations. With an unwavering commitment toward equity and access, the Hispanic/Latino graduation rate has increased nearly 20% under Smith’s leadership to 88%, 10% above the state average.

“We are focused on engaging our students and bringing their voice to the table,” said Dr. Smith. “We have developed a Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council this school year and it has really changed the way we make decisions. It allows for students to make choices for students.”

Superintendent Smith said the award is a reflection of the success of the entire school district and thanked staff, students, parents and district leaders for making this award possible.


WALLA WALLA PUBLIC SCHOOLS • 364 South Park St. • Walla Walla, WA 99362 • Phone: 509-527-3000 • Fax: 509.529.7713

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