Succession Plan Ensures Stability and Continued Growth for FWPS Scholars

Since the announcement of the succession plan for the Superintendent of Federal Way Public Schools, it’s been encouraging to hear from so many staff and parents. Many have reaffirmed the positive impact of Dr. Campbell’s leadership in FWPS over the past six years and shared their support of the decision to appoint Dr. Pfeiffer as the Superintendent for the 2021–22 school year.

The Board’s decision to maintain continuity of strong leadership will allow us to continuously improve, aligns with research, and is embedded in board policy, which is especially important during this time of COVID-19. Continuity of leadership is a powerful strategy that will ensure district effectiveness. Starting and restarting initiatives can create challenges and disruptions to school systems. Dr. Pfeiffer is a proven leader who’s been in FWPS for six years, serving as the Deputy Superintendent for five years. She will continue the tradition of excellence in Federal Way Public Schools.

As a Board, we intentionally require the superintendent to engage in succession planning. Specifically, Board policy B/SR-6 Superintendent Role Expectations states the superintendent’s responsibility is to “develop and implement effective succession planning and leadership development throughout the organization, to ensure the continued effective performance of the organization over time.”

The alternative to a succession plan would entail significant costs and district resources to run a superintendent search. The succession plan allows us a year of support from an exceptional superintendent in Dr. Campbell, and we’re extremely fortunate to have her leadership in Federal Way Public Schools in order to support the transition as we continue to navigate the many changes due to COVID-19. We would like to thank Dr. Campbell who’s committed her 25th year in education to the future of FWPS.

There is an extensive list of what the district has accomplished under her leadership over the past 6 years. We want our district’s incredible progress and the systems Dr Campbell has built with the support of a strong team, including Dr. Pfeiffer, to continue. We must ensure that our students thrive and are offered every opportunity to excel.

FWPS employs 3,000 staff and serves 23,000 students plus their families. As the largest employer in Federal Way, it’s our responsibility to ensure that we’re on solid ground and continue to build upon progress as we move forward.