BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Louisiana’s special school district has an official new leader.
Friday morning, Superintendent of the Louisiana Department of Education John White announced Ernest Garrett III has been selected as the new superintendent of Louisiana’s Special School District (LSSD). Garrett was chosen to oversee all of the state’s special needs schools and programs. He has a background in social work and last served as the executive director and CEO of the Deaf Empowerment Awareness Foundation. He believes he has credibility to serve in this capacity, being deaf himself. Garrett also has previous experience in an administrative role.
“This is my second job as superintendent, again, in a different state, different community, different growth opportunities, but still, I hope that I can be in the better position. I believe that I’m a right fit for Louisiana. It’s a critical time now," Garrett said.
“Ernest is a strong leader and passionate advocate whose extensive experience, as a school administrator, as an advocate of students with low-incidence disabilities and as a social worker in both the school and clinical settings, will bring a unique perspective to the SSD and to the state education department’s executive team,” White said during a press conference at the joint campus of LSD and LSVI. “We look forward to watching the SSD redefine itself as a statewide model of excellence under his guidance.”
Superintendent Garrett officially begins his new role in less than two weeks.
“The state has searched long and hard to fill this role,” said Kathy Edmonston, member of the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education. “This process has led us to the right person, a leader capable of guiding the district, and more importantly, the students it serves, toward a brighter future.”
“It has been a long journey to get to this place. I wholeheartedly welcome the new SSD Superintendent, Mr. Ernest Garrett,” said Rep. Pat Smith, D-Baton Rouge. “The special populations that are in the SSD need a person who can relate to the needs of the students. His appointment is a milestone for these schools, and I know the LSD students will be extremely elated to have a person that they can embrace and who knows their plight and who will provide the pathway toward their success.”
Click here to read Garrett’s full bio.