Meet Our Leadership

Meet Our Superintendent

Tony B. Watlington, Sr. Ed.D.

Dr. Tony B. Watlington Sr. was appointed superintendent of the School District of Philadelphia, the nation’s 8th largest school district with nearly 200,000 students, on April 1, 2022 and was sworn in on June 16, 2022. A collaborative and results-oriented leader, Dr. Watlington began his tenure by launching an aggressive Entry Plan composed of 3 phases. Phase one included a listening and learning tour with 90 sessions in his first 100 days, phase 2 included a Transition Team composed of 100 diverse Philadelphians and K-12 national experts who issued a formal report with short and long-term recommendations, and phase 3 includes the development of an aggressive 5-year strategic planning process to position the school district to become the fastest improving large, urban school district in the country.

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Prior to joining The School District of Philadelphia, Dr. Watlington served as superintendent of the Rowan-Salisbury Schools, North Carolina’s first and only Renewal School District where he launched a new equity-focused strategic plan and accountability model with multiple measures.  He expanded competency-based education, problem-based learning, and strategies that develop the whole child, ensuring that every student graduates and becomes enrolled in college, enlisted in the military, or employed in a good paying job. Under his leadership, the district’s 3rd grade district literacy ranking among the state’s 115 school districts rose from 96 in 2019 to 74 in 2021, the percent of schools that met or exceed state growth targets increased from 55% to 71%, and the percent of schools that exceeded state growth targets increased from 6% to 29%. Additionally, the district ranked #4 among 115 school districts in the state for career and technical (CTE) concentrator students and Dr. Watlington and his team were featured on the NBC Nightly News for innovative leadership during the COVID 19 Pandemic as a result of efforts to keep schools safety open and to mitigate disruption.

Dr. Watlington previously served as Chief of Schools in Guilford County Schools, the third largest school district in North Carolina and the 47th largest among 14,000 school districts in the United States.  He was responsible for improving systems that lead to excellence and equity for all students, which resulted in improved academic outcomes in all subjects, at all grade levels, and for all student groups. In addition to achieving 4 of the 5 top ranked high schools in the state of North Carolina (according to US News and World Report), the district increased graduation rates and teacher satisfaction while reducing teacher turnover, student absenteeism, and student discipline incidents.

A first-generation college graduate and a champion for equity, Dr. Watlington is committed to building collaborative school and community teams that are accountable for creating life changing opportunities for all children, while significantly reducing achievement and opportunity gaps.  A native of Fort Dix, New Jersey and the youngest of seven children, Dr. Watlington grew up in rural Harnett County, North Carolina and was the first member of his family to attend college.  He received his undergraduate degree in History Education from N.C. A&T State University, a master’s degree in American political history from The Ohio State University, a Master’s of School Administration and a Doctoral degree in Educational Leadership degree from UNC-Chapel Hill (where he was a NC Principal Fellow). He also holds training certificates from Harvard and Yale Universities and is a member of the National Urban Superintendent’s Academy sponsored by Howard University and the American Association of School Administrators (AASA).

Dr. Watlington began his career as a history teacher in Guilford County, NC in 1994 and was named district Teacher-of-the-Year in 1998.  A life member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Dr. Watlington was honored as the North Carolina PTA Administrator of the Year in 2014 and he received the Communities-in-Schools (CIS) Champion’s Cup and Business Leaders Movers and Shakers Award. He serves on numerous boards, including the Board of Community Behavioral Health (CBH) and he previously served on the Board of Directors for the North Carolina Public School Forum. Outside of work, his interests include spending time with his family, volunteering in his community, CrossFit training and running 5K races, traveling to historic sites, learning to play his guitar, good food and conversation, and he enjoys an occasional basketball game with his 3 sons, Tony Jr., Aaron, and Caleb.

Meet the Leadership Team


Chief of Communications & Customer Service
Alex Coppadge
215-400-4040 | E-mail


Chief of Curriculum & Instruction
Dr. Nyshawana Francis-Thompson
215-400-4210 | E-mail


Chief of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Dr. Sabriya Jubilee
215-400-4560 | E-mail


Chief of Education & Diverse Learners
Dr. Sonya Berry (Interim)
215-400-4170 | E-mail


Chief of Evaluation, Research & Accountability
Dr. Tonya Wolford
215-400-4100 | E-mail


Chief of Finance
Mike Herbstman
215-400-4500 | E-mail

Melanie Harris

Chief of Information Technology
Melanie Harris
215-400-4400 | E-mail


Chief Learning Officer
Dr. Michael Farrell
215-400-4100 | E-mail


Chief of Operations
Oz Hill
215-400-4310 | E-mail


Chief of School Safety
Kevin Bethel
215-400-4710 | E-mail


Chief of Staff
Sarah Galbally
215-400-4100 | E-mail


Chief of Student Support Services
Karyn Lynch
215-400-4100 | E-mail


Associate Superintendent – Elementary
Evelyn Nuñez
215-400-4820 | E-mail


Associate Superintendent – Secondary
Tomás Hanna
215-400-4820 | E-mail


Deputy Superintendent of Academic Services
Dr. Jermaine Dawson
215-400-4100 | E-mail


Deputy Superintendent of Talent, Strategy and Culture
Jeremy Grant-Skinner
215-400-4100 | E-mail

Lynn Rosner Rauch

General Counsel
Lynn Rauch
215-400-4120 | E-mail

Meet the Network Leadership Team


Learning Network 1
Richard Gordon
215-400-8042 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 1
  • Academy At Palumbo
  • Arts Academy At Benjamin Rush
  • William W. Bodine High School
  • Engineering & Science High
  • Central High School
  • Constitution High School
  • Creative And Performing Arts
  • Franklin Learning Center
  • Girard Academic Music Program
  • Hill-freedman World Academy
  • Lankenau High School
  • Julia R. Masterman High School
  • Motivation High School
  • Northeast High School
  • Parkway C.C. Middle College
  • Phila High School For Girls
  • Paul Robeson High School
  • W. B. Saul High School
  • Widener Memorial School

Learning Network 2
Markita Floyd
215-400-6854 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 2
  • Amedee F. Bregy
  • Bregy, F. Amedee – Head Start
  • Cassidy, Lewis C.
  • Girard, Stephen
  • Gompers, Samuel
  • Hamilton, Andrew
  • Lamberton, Robert
  • Lea, Henry C.
  • Locke, Alain
  • Middle Years Alternative School
  • Overbrook Educational Center
  • Overbrook Elementary
  • Penn Alexander School
  • Powel, Samuel
  • Martha Washington

Learning Network 3
Dr. Evelyn Nuñez (acting)
215-400-5826 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 3
  • Alexander Adaire School
  • Julia De Burgos Elementary
  • Albert M. Greenfield School
  • Gen. Philip Kearny School
  • James R. Ludlow School
  • Mc Call, Gen. George A. School
  • Gen. George G. Meade School
  • Meredith, William M. School
  • John Moffet School
  • Robert Morris School
  • George W. Nebinger School
  • Isaac A. Sheppard School
  • Spring Garden School
  • John Taggart School
  • Vare-washington Elementary
  • Laura W. Waring School
Tennant, Noah - SDP

Learning Network 4
Dr. Noah Tennant
215-400-6134 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 4
  • Frankford High School
  • Benjamin Franklin High School
  • Kensington Health Sciences
  • Kensington High School
  • Kensington Capa
  • Martin L. King High School
  • Abraham Lincoln High
  • Jules Mastbaum High School
  • Parkway-northwest High School
  • Roxborough High School
  • Strawberry Mansion High School
  • George Washington High

Learning Network 5
Renato M. Lajara Ed.D.
215-400-6897 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 5
  • John Barry
  • Henry A. Brown
  • Gloria Casarez School
  • Paul L. Dunbar
  • Hackett School
  • John F. Hartranft School
  • Francis Hopkinson School
  • William H. Hunter School
  • Juniata Park Academy
  • Morton Mcmichael
  • S. Weir Mitchell
  • Luis Munoz-marin
  • Richmond School
  • John H. Webster School
  • John Welsh School
  • Frances E. Willard School

Learning Network 6
Kimberly Newman
215-400-5826 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 6
  • Cook-wissahickon School
  • James Dobson School
  • Franklin S. Edmonds School
  • Eleanor C. Emlen School
  • Fitler Academics Plus
  • Charles W Henry School
  • Henry H. Houston School
  • Jenks Academy Arts & Sciences
  • John B. Kelly School
  • Anna L. Lingelbach School
  • Logan, James School
  • Mccloskey, John F. School
  • Mifflin, Thomas School
  • Pennypacker, Samuel School
  • Shawmont School
Constance Horton

Learning Network 7
Dr. Constance Faith Horton
215-400-5826 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 7
  • Barton School
  • Ellwood School
  • Feltonville Intermediate
  • Feltonville Arts & Sciences
  • Finletter, Thomas K. School
  • Franklin, Benjamin School
  • Howe Academics Plus School
  • James R. Lowell School
  • Thurgood Marshall School
  • Andrew J. Morrison School
  • Olney Elementary School
  • Joseph Pennell Elementary
  • Prince Hall School
  • Rowen School

Learning Network 8
Shakeera Warthen
215-400-8056 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 8
  • Baldi Middle School
  • Castor Gardens Middle School
  • Watson Comly School
  • Crossan, Kennedy C. School
  • Stephen Decatur School
  • Louis H. Farrell School
  • A. L. Fitzpatrick School
  • Fox Chase School
  • Anne Frank School
  • Joseph Greenberg School
  • Hancock Demonstration School
  • Harding, Warren G. Middle Sch
  • William H. Loesche School
  • J. Hampton Moore School
  • Rhawnhurst School
  • Solis-cohen, Solomon School
head shot Tamara

Learning Network 9
Tamara Edwards
215-400-5795 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 9
  • Ethan Allen School
  • Bridesburg School
  • J. Brown Academics Plus School
  • Laura H. Carnell
  • Russell Conwell
  • Hamilton Disston School
  • Thomas Holme School
  • Henry W. Lawton School
  • Mayfair School
  • Northeast Propel Academy
  • Robert B. Pollock School
  • Gilbert Spruance School
  • Allen M. Stearne School
  • William H. Ziegler School

Learning Network 10
Ariel Lajara
215-400-6897 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 10
  • Chester A. Arthur School
  • George W Childs School
  • D. Newlin Fell School
  • Andrew Jackson School
  • A.S. Jenks Academics Plus Sch
  • Francis Scott Key School
  • Eliza B. Kirkbride School
  • W C Longstreth School
  • John M Patterson School
  • Penrose School
  • George Sharswood School
  • Southwark School
  • Edwin M. Stanton
  • Tilden Middle School

Learning Network 11
Amy Williams
215-400-4000 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 11
  • Mary Bethune School
  • Blaine, James G. School
  • Cayuga School
  • Roberto Clemente Middle School
  • Cramp, William School
  • William Dick School
  • Tanner Duckrey
  • Lewis Elkin School
  • Edward Gideon School
  • William D. Kelley School
  • Kenderton Elementary
  • Alexander Mcclure School
  • Thomas G Morton School
  • Thomas M. Peirce School
  • Bayard Taylor School
  • Richard R. Wright

Learning Network 12
Dr. Jamina Clay
215-400-5626 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 12
  • Bache-martin School
  • J. W. Catharine School
  • B. B. Comegys School
  • Anna B. Day School
  • Edwin Forrest School
  • A. D. Harrington School
  • William Mckinley School
  • Austin Meehan Middle School
  • General Louis Wagner
  • Grover Washington, Jr.
  • Wagner, Gen. Louis Middle Sch.
  • Grover Washington Jr. Middle

Learning Network 13
Hilderbrand Pelzer III
215-400-4000 | E-mail

Schools in Learning Network 13
  • John Bartram High School
  • Murrell Dobbins
  • Thomas Edison High School
  • Samuel S. Fels High School
  • Furness, Horace High School
  • Overbrook High School
  • Parkway West High School
  • Phillip A. Randolph
  • Sayre High School
  • South Philadelphia H.S.
  • Swenson Arts And Tech High School
  • West Philadelphia High School
Sean Conley

Acceleration Network
Sean Conley
215-400-5317 | E-mail

Schools in the Acceleration Network
  • Dr. Ethel Allen School
  • Add B. Anderson
  • Blankenburg, Rudolph School
  • Bryant, William C. School
  • Cooke Elementary School
  • Heston, Edward School
  • John Marshall School
  • Delaplaine Mcdaniel
  • Potter-thomas School
  • James Rhoads
  • Rhodes Elementary School
  • Roosevelt Elementary School
  • Edward T Steel School
  • James J. Sullivan

Innovation Network, Opportunity Network
Tomás Hanna (acting)
215-400-6681 | E-mail

Schools in the Innovation Network
  • Building 21
  • Crossroads @ Hunting Park
  • Crossroads Accelerated Academy
  • High School Of The Future
  • Penn Treaty High School
  • Pennypack House School
  • Phila Juv Justice Svcs Ctr
  • Phila Learning Academy-north
  • Phila Learning Academy-south
  • Philadelphia Military Academy
  • Philadelphia Virtual Academy
  • Science Leadership Academy
  • Science Ldshp Academy @ Beeber
  • Science Leadership Academy Ms
  • The Linc
  • The U School
  • The Workshop School
  • Vaux Big Picture High School
Contract-Operated Schools in the Opportunity Network
  • Ben Franklin EOP
  • Camelot Academy East
  • Camelot Academy North
  • El Centro de Estudiantes
  • Excel Academy North
  • Excel Academy South
  • Excel Middle Years Academy
  • Gateway to College
  • Ligouri Academy-Fortis
  • Northeast EOP
  • Ombudsman Northwest Accel
  • One Bright Ray – Elmwood
  • One Bright Ray – Fairhill
  • One Bright Ray – Simpson
  • One Bright Ray – Mansion Day
  • One Bright Ray – Mansion Evening
  • PhillyOIC Workforce Academy
  • South Phila EOP
  • YES Philly

Entry Plan

Phase I: Listening & Learning Tour (Findings)

During Phase 1, Dr. Watlington’s top priority was to listen and learn. He focused this work around five key priority areas. He successfully completed all of the first 100-day priorities as outlined.

A majority activity within Phase 1 was the Listening and Learning tour. Dr. Watlington hosted 90 Listening and Learning sessions that included educators, school leaders, students, family members, central office and school-based staff, citywide groups, and community-based organizations.

Download the First 100 Days document in your language.
Albanian | Arabic | Bengali | Cantonese | Chinese | English | French | Haitian Creole | Indonesian | Khmer | Malayalam | Mandingo | Pashto | Portuguese | Russian | Spanish | Tajik | Ukrainian | Urdu | Uzbek | Vietnamese

Phase 2: Transition Team (Report)

The Transition Team Report was presented to the Board of Education and the public on October 20, 2022. Transition Team Co-chairs Andrea Custis and Dr. Guy Generals shared the findings of the sub-committees and their 91 recommendations.

Download the Transition Team Report English | Spanish

Download the Transition Team Report Executive Summary
English | SHQIP | عربي | 汉语 | Français | ខ្មែរ  | Português | Pусский | Español | Việt

Accelerate Philly: The School District of Philadelphia’s Strategic Plan

Phase 3 of Dr. Watlington’s Transition Process is the creation of a 5-year Strategic Plan. This process began in December and will conclude in May with the launch of the new Strategic Plan. As part of the Strategic Planning process, we will use the learnings and recommendations from Phases 1 and 2 of the transition process–as well as the experiences of our talented school leaders, staff, students, and families–to develop a comprehensive, actionable plan that will serve as a roadmap for our next 5 years. It is through the implementation of this plan that we will position ourselves to become the fastest improving large, urban school district in the country.

Read the Accelerate Philly Executive Summary