''Failure is not an option,' Dillard says of students, schools
January 21, 2021 – Michelle Dillard, who has served as an assistant superintendent with Jefferson County Public Schools since 2014, has been named the district’s assistant superintendent of teaching and learning.
In the new role, Dillard will be responsible for developing and implementing curriculum to help bridge achievement gaps in schools. She will also help ensure the district provides professional development opportunities for educators to help when students return to –in person classes.
In addition, as a national Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) consultant for Solution Tree, she said she is excited her work will also support PLCs in schools, and the district’s Six Essential Systems for a Strong Learning Environment.
"Michelle is incredibly passionate about our students and the kinds of experiences they have day-to-day in our schools," said Dr. Carmen Coleman, JCPS Chief Academic Officer. "She is very knowledgeable about teaching and learning, and truly an expert when it comes to highly effective Professional Learning Communities. These qualities, combined with her deep understanding of our schools and district, make her a perfect fit for this role."
Throughout her 20-year education career – 13 of which have been with JCPS – her passion has been making sure all students receive a high-quality education, regardless of their circumstances. “Failure is not an option for any scholar or any school,” she said. “Success is the only option, a sort of Hippocratic Oath in education.”
Most recently, in her role as assistant superintendent over middle schools, Dillard launched the “Miracle Middle School” initiative, to highlight the projects and successes happening in grades 6-9. She previously served in a similar capacity overseeing schools in a specific geographic area, and before that, served as principal of Seneca High School, where she was credited with helping the school turn around during her tenure.
Dillard holds a master’s degree and Rank 1 from Western Kentucky University and a bachelor’s degree in special education from Murray State University.
Her position is effective Tuesday, Jan. 26.