ABERDEEN – Last week, the Aberdeen School Board and Mississippi School Boards Association announced the district’s next superintendent – Andrea Pastchal-Smith, Ph.D. She has served in numerous roles in her education career, from classroom instructor and coach to administrator and chief academic officer.
Dr. Smith, who begins her position as superintendent July 1. has most recently served as principal of Eiland Middle School in Louisville.
“It’s an honor and privilege to be the new superintendent of the Aberdeen School District. I look forward to working collaboratively with an enthusiastic team and community committed to meeting and exceeding the academic goals and social-emotional needs of all students,” she said in a press release from the Mississippi School Boards Association. “I am joining a team that not only wants to continue the excellence of the Aberdeen School District but also desires to provide enriching educational experiences that will grow and improve the lives of students and families we serve daily. It is a great day to be a Bulldog, and I am looking forward to a phenomenal school year.”
She was selected from a list of 12 applicants, which was narrowed down to four finalists who were interviewed by the school board.
Dr. Smith’s career accomplishments include being named as Lousville’s Administrator of the Year for School Year ’20-’21 and administrator of the year for the Oktibbeha County School District in 2014.
According to the press release, Dr. Smith was credited for leading an elementary school from an F rating to an A rating in 2017, ranking first in the state for third-grade math proficiency scores through the Mississippi Academic Assessment Program in 2017, her school being listed among the top 10 elementary schools in the state for kindergarten-readiness assessment results in 2016, a 100 percent proficiency rate for the fifth-grade Mississippi science test in 2014 and the America Reads Administrator of the Year in the Mississippi State University region for 2012-2013.
“On behalf of the school board, please join us as we welcome Dr. Andrea Pastchal-Smith as our new superintendent at the beginning of the new school year. We are very excited for her and the district. Please give Dr. Smith your full support as she transitions to her new role,” said Aberdeen School Board President Jim Edwards in the press release.
Dr. Smith earned a bachelor’s of science degree in microbiology from the Mississippi University for Women. She went on to earn her master of science degree in secondary science, an educational specialist degree in educational leadership and a doctor of philosophy degree and secondary education administration degree from Mississippi State University.
Additionally, she graduated from the Mississippi School Boards Association Prospective Superintendent Leadership Academy.
Her career in education began in 2000 as a seventh- and eighth-grade science teacher and girls’ basketball coach at B.F. Liddell Middle School in Macon. Her time at the school sparked her enthusiasm to drive students’ desire to strive for success.
Her administrative career began as East Oktibbeha County High School’s assistant principal, and she went on to serve as principal at West Elementary School in Sturgis for eight years.
During her career, Dr. Smith has also served as a federal programs director, director of student assessment and intervention, English language coordinator and chief academic officer.
According to the press release, she has expertise in strategic planning; curriculum and program development; data-driven instruction; effective faculty interaction and communication; and teacher capacity building.
Dr. Smith also has a background in advocating legislators in supporting education; implementing policies; managing annual budgets; overseeing dual credit for area high schools; hiring teachers and support staff; securing partnerships with community organizations; maintaining a safe environment for students; and staying updated with current practices, trends and curriculum, according to the press release.
Dr. Smith is married to Clinton Smith, and the couple has two sons – Justin, who is an attorney, and Jordan, who is an officer in the U.S. Air Force.