Bilingual director named assistant elementary lead

Changes continue to take place within Hays CISD’s top staff as the district promoted from within to fill a necessary position.

On July 25, the Hays CISD board of trustees named Alejandro Góngora as the Assistant Superintendent of Elementary Schools.

The move comes as Hays CISD fills open positions within the district hierarchy.

Earlier this summer, Hays CISD named Yarda Leflet, executive director of learning and teaching, as the acting Chief Academic Officer after Kim Pool retired, said Tim Savoy, Hays CISD public information officer.

Last week, Hays CISD hired Dr. Ann Dixon as the district’s interim superintendent.

Góngora, who was hired by Hays CISD in 2015 as the Director of Bilingual, English as a Second Language (ESL) and Migrant Programs, takes over for Tim Persall, who over the summer announced his retirement from Hays CISD.

As the Assistant Superintendent of Elementary Schools, Góngora will provide direct leadership to elementary campuses “in order to meet the instructional goals of the district,” as well as ensure integrity of the district’s vision, according to the district’s Facebook page.

Góngora has been an educator for 17 years, according to his biography on the Hays CISD website.

He began his education career at T.A. Brown Elementary School in Austin ISD as a 4th grade bilingual teacher. He then took on the role as a reading specialist and instructional coach, allowing him the opportunity to build capacity with staff and provide students a strong literacy foundation.

Góngora’s administrative career began in Round Rock I.S.D as an assistant principal at Xenia Voigt Elementary and Purple Sage Elementary.

In February 2009, Góngora became the principal at Oak Meadows Elementary in Manor ISD. Through his leadership, Oak Meadows Elementary went from an academically unacceptable state accountability rating to a met standard with a Texas Education Agency (TEA) campus distinction in “Top 25 Percent: Student Progress.”

From there, Góngora became the principal at Decker Middle School where the campus earned Advanced Via Individual Determination (AVID) National Demonstration School status. AVID is a global nonprofit organization dedicated to closing the achievement gap by preparing all students for college and other postsecondary opportunities.

As Hays CISD Director of Bilingual, ESL, & Migrant Programs, Gongora collaborated with district departments and campuses to improve services for English language learners, teachers and the community.

Góngora is also a doctoral student at the University of Texas-Austin in the Cooperative Superintendency Program and actively presents at workshops and conferences. His parents came to the United States from Colombia.

Born in Flushing Queens, N.Y. and raised in Houston, Góngora is married to Vanessa Góngora, a fellow educator.

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