Longtime Deer Park ISD administrator to be next superintendent
Harrell, 53, has spent two decades with the district as a member of the faculty and an administrator and was named the lone finalist for the position in January. The board gave final approval for him to be superintendent on Feb. 17.
For Harrell, the appointment is something of a passing of the baton, with White having served as both colleague and mentor.
Both were both principals in the district at the same time.
“It’s been a phenomenal experience,” said Harrell, who became assistant superintendent in 2013.
He said of White, “The the man is full of wisdom and a person of very high moral character…someone you would want to be around.”
Their bond goes back to when Harrell was a student and athlete in junior high school and high school and White was working in the district as an educator and coach.
“The man had a great impact on my life at that time and is probably one of the main reasons I pursued a career in education,” Harrell said. “You don’t think about it at the time, but those experiences you have with people that coach you and teach you — you remember the great ones and those are the ones that make you want to have that same impact on kids, and that ultimately has put me here in this position today.”
Said White: “Our business is all about people. As long as Stephen remembers that and that the decisions he makes places students’ interests and success first, he’ll be a success.”
Like White, Harrell believes that having spent much of his career in the classroom gives an administrator an edge.
“You have that credibility with teachers,” Harrell said. “When I went into education, I didn’t think I was going in it to be a superintendent. I thought I was going to be a teacher and a coach, which were the things that drew me into the profession. As your priorities change, you see how administrators can have an impact on a bigger scale. Now, you are impacting an entire district.”
White is credited with driving the district’s embrace of digital technology and its emphasis on using social media to communicate.
Harrell said he wants to continue White’s lead in embracing change.
The education and career options for students have changed over the past 30 years, Harrell said.
“We’ve got stay in the forefront of career technology,” he said. “Look at where we are (with the petrochemical industry). We’ve got to able to change with that shifting tide and make sure that when students graduate from Deer Park High School, they are prepared to get what they need. Whether it’s going to work in the refineries, college or joining the military — we have to have diverse opportunities for everyone.”
Harrell, a 1985 Deer Park High School graduate, has served as both assistant principal and principal of Deepwater Junior High and as principal at Bonnette Junior High. He was a science teacher and coach from 1989-1999.
“There is nothing more rewarding than seeing a student you taught or coached 20 years ago remember you,” he said. “I want to create an environment in the district where students want to come to school and (faculty) want to come back.”
Harrell lives in Deer Park with his wife, who is a Pasadena ISD administrator.
DEER PARK UFSD AT A GLANCE 2019-20
The Every Student Succeeds Act, or ESSA, the main federal law for K-12 public education, requires that states hold public schools accountable for how students achieve. New York State established a set of indicators to measure school and district performance.
The accountability system classifies schools into one of three categories: In Good Standing, a Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI) school, or a Targeted Support and Improvement (TSI) school.
|School District Designations|
|Good Standing District||Target District|
|A district in Good Standing demonstrates success in all performance goals.||Districts that struggled to prepare some of their student subgroups on some or all indicators are identified as Target Districts.|
Learn about the equity and effectiveness of our federal, state, and local educational resources.
Financial transparency reports outline how much each school is spending per student and the source of the funds. These financial transparency reports were issued for the first time in 2020 for the 2018-19 school year, and annual releases will be available after April 1st in each subsequent year. School district financial transparency reports, which display per pupil expenditures for individual schools, as well as district averages, inform conversations within districts about whether equitable resources are being provided at the school level. At the state level, these reports help inform future Board of Regents State Aid requests and other policymaking decisions.
DEER PARK UFSD 2019-20 School Year Financial Transparency
Learn more financial transparency
The graduation rate is the percentage of students who entered grade 9 in the same school year who earned a local or Regents diploma four years later.
The New York State Education Department (NYSED) reports the percentage of students who earned a local or Regents diploma by June, four year after they entered grade 9. NYSED also reports the percentage of students who earned a local or Regents diploma by August of the same year (the August percentage includes all students who earned a diploma by June and August combined).
The New York State Education Department also reports the percentage of students who earned a local or Regents diploma five and six years later.
|4, 5, and 6-Year Graduation Rates (June and August)|
|2016 4-year August Cohort||92%|
|2016 4-year June Cohort||92%|
|2015 5-year August Cohort||94%|
|2015 5-year June Cohort||94%|
|2014 6-year August Cohort||94%|
|2014 6-year June Cohort||94%|
For more information about the graduation rate by student subgroup, or to compare graduation rates for your school or district to the state graduation rate, please refer to your school or district’s full report on graduation rate data
SCHOOLS IN DEER PARK UFSD
© Copyright New York State Education Department, all rights reserved.
This document was created on: October 18, 2021, 3:07 am ESTTop
Deer Park Schools Superintendent to Host Community Conversations
Dear Deer Park Community,
Over the past six weeks, Deer Park Community City School District Treasurer Jeff Lewis and I have been meeting with individual Deer Park families to discuss the state of our school district in terms of both academics and finances.
We have taken great pride in sharing many of our district’s academic successes as well as other accomplishments that have occurred over the past seven and a half years since our last district operating levy in November of 2013. Most notably bringing our overall progress grade on the State’s District Report Card from an “F” in 2013 to an overall “A” on the most recent State Report Card in 2019. This is one of many successes we have been sharing with our community of which we are extremely proud.
We are now at a crossroads in our district financially. For the first time since 2013, our district expenditures are now out pacing our revenue. Unfortunately, this is the nature of school district funding in the State of Ohio. Our community will have some decisions to make in the near future regarding how our school district moves forward from a financial perspective.
I will be continuing our Community Conversations over the next month and I would like to speak to as many of our community members as possible to share our story and to also seek your input and recommendations for how our school district should continue to move forward.
I have set up several meetings beginning next week and lasting through mid-May. There will be opportunities to attend either an in-person meeting or a virtual meeting so that those who would like to participate can do so in a way in which they feel most comfortable.
Please click on the below link to see available meeting times and I ask that you sign-up for a time that best works for you. If you have any questions, I can be reached via email at [email protected] or via telephone at 513.891.0222.
Deer Park Community Conversation Sign-up
Inspiring & Empowering Lifelong Success!
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From Deer Park Schools: James Cummings has been named the new superintendent of schools for the Deer Park School District, replacing the retiring Eva J. Demyen. His hiring was announced at the Deer Park Board of Education's March 26 business meeting, to the applause of colleagues, family and community members.
Cummings had served as Deer Park's assistant superintendent for pupil personnel services since 2016. He began his Deer Park career in 1997 as a business teacher at the high school, after four years in corporate sales for Cigna and MCI/Worldcom. He previously served as Deer Park High School principal, Robert Frost Middle School principal and associate principal, and the high school's varsity track, winter track and cross-country coach. The Sayville resident earned his bachelor's degree in business management from SUNY Cortland and master's degrees in secondary education and administration from Dowling College. "I am both proud and humbled to be appointed as the next superintendent of Deer Park Schools," Cummings said. "Having been in this district for over 20 years, as a coach, teacher, assistant principal, principal and assistant superintendent, I have seen the amazing students of Deer Park accomplish so much. As the superintendent, I promise that I will uphold the great traditions of Deer Park Schools. Equally as important, I will work tirelessly along with our wonderful staff, to ensure that our district stays on the forefront of current educational trends, and that our students are prepared for the ever-changing world that they will be thrust into upon leaving us. I love this community and look forward to serving it in my new capacity." James Cummings: James Cummings has been named the new superintendent of schools for the Deer Park School District.
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