• EVERY STUDENT, EVERY CHANCE, EVERY DAY •Dr. David E. Cash, Superintendent • 720 Santa Barbara Street, Santa Barbara, CA 93101 • (805) 963-4338
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
At last night’s board meeting, Dr. Cynthia White was appointed to serve as the new principal of Cleveland Elementary School, effective July 1, 2012. Dr. White will replace retiring principal Michael Vail. Cleveland Elementary, a year round school, serves almost 450 children in grades K-6. The school is located at 123 Alameda Padre Serra, Santa Barbara, CA.
Dr. White came to Santa Barbara in the late 1970s to attend UC Santa Barbara, where she received a bachelor’s degree in Spanish, a master’s degree in education policy, an elementary teaching credential, an administrative services credential, and a doctorate in education.
Dr. White has been with the Santa Barbara School Districts since 1982 although she took a sabbatical to teach, live, and work in Spain, Mexico, and Japan. She’s taught every grade level except first grade. In addition to her teaching positions she has been a coordinator of a federal grant for English learners, an assistant principal, a district coordinator, and she currently serves as the district’s director of curriculum and categorical programs.
Her passion for education came at an early age, as her mother and great aunt were also educators. Dr. White’s mother retired from UC Santa Barbara at the age of 80, having dedicated her career to art and education.
“My research and career have been dedicated to opening access to higher education for all students. I want all students to have engaging experiences in our schools that inspire them to become informed, participating citizens in our community.” A big part of Dr. White’s mission has been equity in education. She has participated and supported the Anti-Defamation League’s training of A World of Difference, and No Place for Hate programs as they embody the same pro-child, positive engagement stance that Dr. White endeavored to provide for all students during her career.
Dr. White has been involved in research projects at both Santa Barbara High School and Santa Barbara Junior High School that examined how time during the summer can provide students ways to participate in school and community projects that change how they perceive and then participate in school and the community. Currently, as director of curriculum and categorical programs, she works behind the scenes to make sure that teachers, students, and staff have the training, support, and materials that they need to make equitable access happen for our most at-risk students. At the district level she has spearheaded programs such as AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination), a program that helps first generation students to meet University of California entrance requirements, and READ 180, that helps struggling readers get back on track.
Dr. White is married to Tom White, a local restaurateur. She has two stepchildren who both attended local public schools.