Monitoring the Winter Storm - March 18-19, 2018

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Douglas County School District Interim Superintendent Erin Kane

Erin Kane is the Interim Superintendent of the Douglas County School District, Colorado’s third largest school District, serving approximately 67,000 students.

Kane brings a broad range of experiences to her latest role with DCSD. As the Executive Director of American Academy, she has built a charter system with a third campus expected to open in 2017. Kane previously spent time in the high technology industry in project development, project management, education and consulting. She earned her engineering degree in applied mathematics and computer science from the University of Colorado, Boulder.

The Superintendent’s responsibility is to ensure accomplishment of the Board of Education's goals and vision for the District.
Superintendent Evaluation

2017 Superintendent Evaluation by the DCSD Board of Education

Superintendent's Message

+ January 2018

+ October 2017

+ August 2017

+ June 2017

+ March 2017

+ January 2017

+ October 2016

+ September 2016

Interim Superintendent Goals
In October, the Board of Education met with Interim Superintendent Erin Kane, setting the following goals for SY 2017-2018:


GOAL 1:  Focus on Climate and Culture throughout DCSD

Objective: Create and foster a work environment that will increase employee satisfaction and reduce turnover*.

  1. Examine DCSD’s Core Values, solicit feedback from students, staff, committees and the community and recommend a refresh to the Board of Education.
  2. Continue to promote organization-wide practices around cultural norms and communication. Measure by the responses to communications to employees and parents as well as by personal conduct.
  3. Follow board policy regarding the chain of communication for staff, parent, and community grievances.
  4. Continue to meet with stakeholder groups and be willing to listen to and compile updated feedback.
  5. Demonstrate transparent communication. Send the board regular updates with an honest view of the status of the district. Be honest about mistakes and challenges. Communicate honestly and regularly with staff, parents and community. Clearly communicate challenges and how they are being addressed.
  6. Focus on climate and culture in the operations group. Survey the group in the winter and again in the spring to look for improvements.
  7. Continue to improve organization turnover. Measure by looking at the number of employee resignations (by group) known at the end of the school year as compared to the number of resignations known at the end of the last two school years.*

*Understanding that the financial reasons for turnover (pay not competitive) cannot be resolved at this time.



GOAL 2Lead a Stable Transition through the Interim Period

Objective: Bring stability to the district and leave DCSD in a better place than it was prior to September 2017.

  1. Collect additional feedback from school leaders to determine how we did on the original action plan
  2. Create a new Action Plan, based on the updated feedback from schools.
  3. Create and execute a plan to address each item in the new Action Plan.
  4. Continue to communicate expectations during this interim period.
  5. Create a document outlining the responsibilities and budget managed under each leadership position in the current organization.
  6. Once a superintendent search is underway, establish a transition team.



GOAL 3:  Plan for the Potential of a Mill Levy Override and Bond Election in 2018

Objective: Develop a financial and communication plan for a 2018 bond and mill levy override initiative.

  1. Prepare and communicate two budget scenarios for the 2018-19 school year, depending on the outcome of a potential bond/mlo initiative
  2. Continue to work with the Joint Committee to assist them in their efforts to provide a recommendation to the Board of Education.
  3. Develop a comprehensive funding communication and outreach plan.
  4. Continue to educate school, district, and community leaders on the realities of state and local funding.
  5. Make recommendations to the Board of Education with respect to prioritized uses of potential bond and mill levy override dollars.



GOAL 4:  Make a Recommendation to the Board of Education with Respect to Educational Excellence and Pay for Performance

Objective: Collect stakeholder feedback and use in the preparation of recommendations.

  1. Analyze the Community Survey results to use in recommendations.
  2. Collect and compile additional feedback from all stakeholders, including educators, parents, students, staff, and community members.
  3. Develop a recommendation around defining educational excellence to inform the strategic plan and BOE end statements.
  4. Develop a plan for measuring educational excellence.
  5. Develop a recommendation for the future of pay for performance and compensation in DCSD.


District Senior Leadership Action List
This list is not in any particular priority order.

Action 1: Collaboratively define educational excellence in DCSD.

Action 2: Prepare for a potential bond/mill levy override (MLO) for the November 2018 election.

Action 3: Analyze pay gaps with other districts and create a strategy to address internal and external pay gaps.

Action 4: Work with employee groups to gather feedback on evaluation and differentiated pay and make improvements as needed.

Action 5: Improve the Site Based Budgeting (SBB) model and process based on stakeholder feedback.  

Action 6: Develop and work toward a better special education and mental health structure; build capacity in school-based staff; identify and fill gaps.

Action 7: Evaluate and improve the Charter Application Review Team (CART) process.

Action 8: Collaborate with schools to optimize athletic and activity transportation access.

Action 9: Optimize the process for planning and completing minor construction and maintenance projects in schools.

Action 10: Evaluate custodial salary issue; look at pay ranges; empower principals.

Speaking Engagements
Interim Superintendent Erin Kane and her team enjoy meeting members of our community. Recently she has been working to speak to local groups about the state of the Douglas County School District, including the challenges the district faces and possible ways for the community to support our students and staff.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017, at 5:00 PM
Castle Pines Chamber of Commerce @ Castle Pines Library

Thursday, October 18, 2017, @ 6:00 PM
Stroh Ranch Community Association

December 19, 2017, @ 6:30 PM
Highlands Ranch Community Association Delegates @ Eastridge Rec Center

Wednesday, February 7, 2018, @ 3:30 PM
Leadership Douglas County Event @ Lone Tree Library

Thursday, February 15, 2018, @ 7:30 AM
Castle Rock Economic Development Council and Downtown Alliance

Tuesday, March 6, 2018, @ 7:30 AM
Castle Rock Chamber of Commerce

Wednesday, April 25, 2018, @ 11:30 AM
Women of Influence Luncheon @ The Urban Event Space

Schedule a Visit

If you would like to have the interim superintendent or another member of the Douglas County School District's leadership team speak to a community organization, please contact our Community Relations Specialist Nate Jones. 

Nate Jones
Community Relations Specialist 

DCSD Superintendent Search

Douglas County School District is seeking its next permanent superintendent. The DCSD Board of Education has selected Ray and Associates (no relation to DCSD Board Director, David Ray) to conduct the search for the next superintendent, following a thorough vetting of potential search firms.

In order to fund the cost of a national superintendent search, the board’s operational budget (used for legal expenses, conferences and lobbyist services) was reprioritized to ensure that there would be no impact on any other budget in the system.



Community Input

"Thank you!" The Douglas County School District (DCSD) Board of Education extends sincere thanks and appreciation to the Douglas County community for participating in the search for a permanent superintendent. 

More than 3,000 educators, administrators, support staff, parents, students, business leaders and non-parent community members who provided feedback by completing an online survey. Many others took time out of their busy schedules to attend community input meetings which were held across the school district last month. 

The DCSD Board of Education reviewed all of the feedback received and used it to finalize the candidate profile. Based on the input provided, the following 10 criteria were identified and deemed most important for the permanent superintendent:

  1. Promotes a positive and professional environment that includes mutual trust and respect among district employees and the Board.
  2. Is strongly committed to a “student first” philosophy in all decisions.
  3. Possesses excellent people skills and can present a positive image of the District; is willing to listen to input and is a decision maker.
  4. Inspires trust, has high levels of self-confidence and optimism, and models high standards of integrity and personal performance.
  5. Has experience recruiting and maintaining exceptional staff for the district and schools.
  6. Has experience as a classroom teacher or student support position in a school.
  7. Is a strong communicator: speaking, listening and writing.
  8. Previous experience that will benefit the long-term financial health of the district, including successful experience in passing bond or mill levy increases.
  9. Can develop and communicate a vision of quality education for the future of the Board, staff, and community.
  10. Has knowledge of emerging research and best practice in the areas of curriculum/instructional design and practice.

View the press release


Superintendent Search flyerInterested Candidates

Download the flyer here.

Click here to learn more about the search process, or to apply.

The application will close on Monday, March 12. We are planning on identifying finalists in early April.

The permanent superintendent search process is being led by Ray and Associates of Cedar Rapids, Iowa - a firm specializing in searches for educational executive leadership services.