Fonseca completes Harvard leadership program
by Staff Reports
Watauga County Schools Superintendent David Fonseca has completed Harvard University's program in Leading Education Systems, a special program offered by the Harvard Graduate School of Education to help educational leaders create and implement policies and practices to improve education for students.
"This has been a great experience in professional development for me," said Fonseca. "It was very challenging material and required a lot of time and effort to complete the program, but I believe it will help strengthen my work for our students.
In the Watauga County Schools, we strive to constantly improve instruction in collaboration with our school personnel, our families and the community as a whole. Working with these partners, I look forward to applying what I have learned to make our schools even more effective at helping students grow and succeed at the highest possible levels."
The website for Leading Education Systems notes that participants "work directly with Harvard faculty and collaborate online with educational leaders from around the world."
Each week of the eight-week program focuses on a selected key topic in education. The coverage of each topic includes an online lecture from Harvard faculty, small group sessions, extensive assigned readings, and live online sessions with faculty and teaching fellows.
Students in the program "study current research and analyze best practices from the most effective school systems across the globe and think broadly and systematically about efforts to build and manage sustainable high-quality schools and school systems."
Participants then develop their own strategies and plans for improving education in the school systems where they work.
This was not Fonseca's first experience at Harvard. He completed the Leadership Institute for Superintendents at Harvard in March of 2012.
Dr. Fonseca educational background also includes a bachelor's degree from the University of Veracruz in Veracruz, Mexico, a master's degree in school administration from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and a doctoral degree in educational leadership from Appalachian State University. In addition to his recent work at Harvard, he has completed several school leadership programs at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Dr. Fonseca was named interim superintendent for the Watauga County Schools last June 1 and his appointment is effective through June 30. He was assistant superintendent for the school system at the time of that appointment.
He came to the Watauga County Schools in October of 2012 from a position as assistant superintendent of instructional services for the Winston-Salem Forsyth County Schools.
Fonseca has also served as a school principal in the Catawba County Schools, as an assistant principal in Gaston County, and as a school system administrator for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. His classroom experience includes teaching positions at the elementary, middle, and high school levels and he has coached middle school and high school soccer and basketball.