Carroll School Board members voted Monday to name Dr. Mary Johnston as the district’s new Executive Director of Special Programs. She will leave Old Union Elementary School after four years serving that campus as principal and instead fill a vacancy at central office brought on by the retirement of Dr. Cathy Friar.
Dr. Johnston is in her 18th year in public education including 11 years in educational administration. While at OUES she led the staff and students to the District’s goal of excellence achieving an Exemplary Rating by the Texas Education Agency; earning the Texas Business & Education Coalition Honor Roll Award, being named a 2011 NCEA Higher Performing School; earning the Online Math League National Championship in grades 2, 3, and 4; and boasting a team of Odyssey of the Mind World Finalists.
Additionally, she served as Principal of Walnut Hill Elementary in Dallas ISD, where her students achieved the Exemplary rating. Dr. Johnston also served the Carroll community in the past as Assistant Principal at Eubanks Intermediate and Johnson Elementary. She is currently the State First Vice President for Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association, as well as on the Board of Directors for Education in Action.
“I am proud of the positive learning environment and engaging work I have led at Old Union Elementary during the last four years,” Dr. Johnston said. “I am excited to serve the district in a more expansive capacity as Executive Director of Special Programs. We have excellent programs established in Carroll ISD and I look forward to supporting our students, parents, and educational professionals in my new role.”
Dr. Johnston was introduced at Monday night’s School Board meeting where she attended with her family and her parents. She and husband, Mike, have two children who attend CISD schools – Alex and Anna. Dr. Johnston’s greatest strengths include management and leading people in order to create a culture of learning to achieve excellence. She completed her Doctor of Education from the University of Texas at Austin Cooperative Superintendency Program, earned a graduate degree from Texas Christian University, and a Bachelor’s of Arts in English, with a second teaching field in Spanish.
During her tenure as a campus administrator, Dr. Johnston facilitated and led parent meetings including Special Education meetings, Annual Review, and Dismissal (ARD) Meetings, and Section 504 meetings.
Dr. JJ Villarreal, Assistant Superintendent for Student Services, will now head up an interview committee to help recommend a replacement for Johnston. The committee will be comprised of administrators, campus teachers and parent representatives.
“We are very excited to recommend Dr. Johnston for the Executive Director of Special Programs position,” said Dr. Villarreal. “At the same time our responsibility now places the focus in finding a new leader for our outstanding OUES student, staff and parents. We will post the position immediately with a goal of bringing a recommendation to our Board on August 6. This will provide time for the preparation for the start of school.’