The Peoria Unified School District Governing Board approved the appointment of Teresa Hernandez, Ed.D. as chief academic support officer and Mr. Matthew Colee as director of human resources at the March 10 Board Meeting. Hernandez will be responsible for providing leadership in the development and maintenance of educational programs and services for all learners. She will have supervision over all academic services, which include curriculum and instruction, arts education, professional development, special/alternative education, federal programs, instructional technology, gifted, English language learners and research and assessment. Colee will be responsible for all aspects of the daily operations of the Human Resources department, which includes hiring, staffing, recruitment, professional growth, background clearances, paperwork documentation, employee investigations, and serves in an advisory role in the district on employment issues.
Hernandez joins Peoria Unified with a vast amount of educational experience, currently serving as the director of educational technology and distance learning in the Washington Elementary School District. Prior to her tenure in Washington Elementary, Hernandez held several administrative positions in various school districts in Colorado. Hernandez received her bachelor’s degree in secondary education from the University of Montana and a master’s degree in educational administration from National University in California. In 2018, Hernandez received her doctorate in educational leadership with an emphasis in assessment and accountability from Northcentral University. Hernandez will take over for Kendra Bell, Ed.D., who recently retired from Peoria Unified. Hernandez will begin her new appointment starting July 1.
Colee has been part of the Peoria Unified human resources team since 2018 where he served as a Human Resource specialist and most recently a human resource generalist. Prior to joining Peoria Unified, Colee served in various roles such as government move coordinator, project manager/marketing and recruiting officer for a large university. He previously served in roles supporting onboarding, recruiting and hiring, performance management as well as guiding employees through benefits options. Colee also served six years in active duty and two years in the Air Guard with the United States Air Force where he was an aviation maintenance supervisor. Colee earned a bachelor’s degree in management from University of Phoenix. In 2018, he received a master’s degree in leadership and organization development from Grand Canyon University. Colee will take over for Laura Vesely, who was recently appointed as chief personnel officer. Colee will begin his new appointment on Monday, March 21.
Peoria Unified, located in the Northwest Valley, serves more than 37,000 students in 34 elementary schools, seven high schools and one non-traditional high school. With ongoing open enrollment and alternative educational opportunities, the district boasts a 94 percent high school graduation rate. It is one of the largest unified school districts in Arizona and prides itself on excelling schools, award-winning teachers, high test scores, specialized signature programs and championship sports programs. The Vision of the Peoria Unified School District is “Every student, every day, prepared to shape tomorrow.” For more information, visit the district’s website at www.peoriaunified.org.