As your incoming president I am committed to the extensive and challenging work undertaken by our nine statewide ESDs and particularly to the goals of the AESD/OSPI Network. Given the new statewide initiatives to be undertaken as a result of the McCleary decision, ESSA, school safety, and appreciation for diversity in its many forms, educators and their organizations will have their efforts defined for years to come. I know our ESDs will help take the lead in sharing the educational pathway which assist ALL students in achieving their potential and having the skills needed to contribute to an ever changing twenty-first century.

Within that vision, it is my desire as President of the AESD to do all I can to encourage and activate the mission and goals of the Network. They were “born” over the past year with a combination of idealism and reality, thoughtful discourse, and a unified commitment to their collaborative engagement and implementation. It was a comprehensive effort by all the superintendents and Executive Board members to activate their values into a plan for the continuing improvement of education in the State of Washington.

We have chosen to work toward our goals of “Developing Strategic Relationships”, “Growing the Network and Providing Needed Services”, and “Developing a Communications Plan” in a more cooperative, rather than competitive manner. In doing that we will ensure the achievement of our mission to provide equity and excellence in education through effective services delivered statewide.

As I assume the position of President, it is with great appreciation for the work of the Executive Board, our ESD Superintendents, the leadership of President Rick Anthony, and most certainly Dr. Gene Sharratt and his staff for bringing inspiration, organization, and lots of hard work in the creation of the Network and a path forward. As our work progresses, ESDs, districts, educators, parents and students, will surely benefit from our work. I’m on board to ensure it happens!

Rainer Houser
ESD 112, 2018-20 AESD President