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El Paso ISD announces 4 new key leadership appointments

(El PASO INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT – March 10, 2023) – El Paso ISD recently named key leadership appointments including the executive director of Leadership and Talent Development, executive director of Whole Learner Support and Intervention, director of Early Childhood Learning and director of employee benefits.

The appointments include:

• Michelle Casillas, former principal of Tom Lea Elementary School, has been named executive director of Leadership and Talent Development. Casillas was an assistant principal, coordinator of professional learning services, instructional coordinator for reading/language arts, literacy leader and teacher before joining El Paso ISD as a principal in 2017. In 2022, she was named Region 19 Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association’s TEPSAN of the Year. Casillas will lead the research, design and districtwide implementation of Professional Development and capacity building for district levels. She will be working collaboratively with stakeholders to support the vision, philosophy, and goals of the district’s curriculum and instruction plan.

• Tyra Harrison, who was named the executive director of Whole Learner Support and Intervention, comes to El Paso ISD from the Richmond City Public Schools district in Virginia where she was executive director of teaching and learning. She also has served as the director of academic programs and support and manager of student support and interventions. Harrison’s career in education began as a classroom teacher, media instructor, technology teacher and activity coordinator. As executive director of Whole Learner Support and Intervention, Harrison will lead the planning, design, delivery, evaluation, ongoing improvement, and effective operation of the aspects of the districtwide MTSS program.

• Christina Chapa, former principal of Moreno Elementary School, has been named director of Early Childhood Literacy. She also has been an assistant principal at the former Bond Elementary School, Lamar Elementary/LaFarelle and About Face K-8 Alternative School. She also was a literacy coach, elementary music teacher and classroom teacher in El Paso ISD. As director of Early Childhood Literacy, she will be providing leadership and oversight of the development, design, implementation, supervision, and evaluation of the Early Childhood Learning (Pre-K) and Montessori program.

• Juan Chavez, assistant director of employee benefits, was promoted to director of benefits. Chavez, a licensed life/health insurance agent, is a former U.S. Marine Corps executive officer. He is a Certified Professional with the Society for Human Resource Management. Before joining El Paso ISD, he worked for ADP and First Financial Group of America. Chavez will oversee and support all the overall operations of the employee benefits program including planning, developing and coordinating the procedures or programs which may be required to effectively manage the employee benefits program to include self-funded medical plan, ancillary benefit programs, leave management and catastrophic sick leave bank.