• PXU Names Ms. Thea Andrade Superintendent

    Thea Andrade

    On Tuesday, March 5, 2024, the Phoenix Union High School District (PXU) Governing Board unanimously selected Ms. Thea Andrade as the next superintendent following an extensive screening process with three finalists conducted on March 4th and 5th. This selection is contingent upon negotiating an employment contract and the Board's acceptance of an independent background check report. Already serving as the interim superintendent, Ms. Andrade will begin her official appointment following negotiations with the Governing Board.

    Before being named superintendent, Ms. Andrade served as Interim Superintendent in 2023-24 and PXU's Chief Achievement Officer (CAO) since 2019. As CAO, she led the Safety, Student & Family Services, and Teaching & Learning Divisions. Ms. Andrade joined the district in 2011, leading the Assessment & Accountability Department and serving as Director of Assessment & Accountability before joining the PXU Executive Team as the Executive Director for Technology & Innovation.

    Ms. Andrade has served in Arizona's public education for nearly three decades and as an administrator for over 20 years. As a former mathematics teacher, she taught middle and high school Algebra. Ms. Andrade earned a Master's in Educational Leadership from Northern Arizona University and served as a high school principal and Director of Quality Schools before joining PXU. Ms. Andrade is passionate about ensuring equitable opportunities, access to quality seats, and high academic standards. She is dedicated to student success by leading the implementation of the PXU Teaching & Learning Framework, enhancing Freshman Year Experience, and increasing post-secondary preparedness through dual enrollment, internships, and meaningful workforce opportunities.

    "I want to thank the PXU staff, community, and Governing Board for giving me the opportunity of a lifetime to serve as your next Superintendent," said Ms. Andrade. "Our shared commitment to student success, academic excellence, and changing lives is why I love our community so much. I look forward to our continued partnership, as we know, there is still much work to do. I am more confident than ever that we are ready to meet the challenges and lead our city into a brighter future together.”

    "Our Board is excited to continue our work with Superintendent Andrade to build upon the many strengths of our district while meeting all challenges to improve outcomes for every student we serve. Her dedication to PXU, our staff, our students, and our families exemplifies what we envision for our district," said Governing Board President Ceyshe Napa. "Our Board thanks our community for their engagement and input throughout the search process and the assistance of our HYA Associate team," Ms. Napa said. "We received input from hundreds of invested parents, staff, students, and partners that supported us in making our selection decision."

    The Board began its search process in November 2023 by recruiting a national search firm. After selecting HYA, the Board and HYA started the engagement phase, which included focus groups, community forums, and stakeholder interviews. The application closed on February 12th, with 29 total applicants. The Board screened applicants and identified five semi-finalists who were interviewed in the executive session on February 29, and narrowed the search to three finalists at that time. On March 4th and 5th, the three finalists visited multiple PXU schools, engaged in several stakeholder discussions, and participated in a staff- and community-wide forum.