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San Diego County Superintendent of Schools

Dr. Paul Gothold, profileThe county superintendent of schools, appointed by the county board of education, is the chief administrative officer, employer and developer of programs and services as authorized by state statute or determined by needs or requests. He also provides educational leadership and administers mandated services. 

The county superintendent of schools has direct oversight responsibilities for approving and assuring school district budgets, calling school district elections, and assisting with school district emergencies by providing necessary services. He is also tasked with developing a three-year Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP) for the schools operated by the County Office, and reviewing and approving the LCAPs for all school districts in San Diego County.

About Dr. Paul Gothold

Dr. Paul Gothold was named San Diego County Superintendent of Schools in 2017, after four years leading Lynwood Unified School District where he championed systemic changes to improve student outcomes.

Gothold has more than 25 years in K-12 education with a focus on building school systems with equity at the core. He has a proven track record of supporting quality professional learning for teachers, backing innovative ideas, and putting students first. 

While at Lynwood, the population was 96% students of color and more than 94% qualified for free- or reduced-lunch. Through his efforts, Lynwood went from failing and on the brink of receivership to one of only three in the nation – and one in California – to be selected as a 2017 College Board AP District of the Year. The award is for simultaneously raising the number of students taking Advanced Placement (AP) classes and improving passing rates on AP exams. The district graduation rate rose 23 percentage points since 2010-11 with a current rate of 93%.

Since beginning his career as a teacher for adjudicated youth in Los Angeles County, Gothold’s heart and passion have been in working to ensure every student regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, or language has the opportunity to succeed in school and in life. He believes that starts with graduating high school with the option to attend a four-year college. 

Gothold received his doctor of education from the University of Southern California and his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Whittier College, where he has also served as an adjunct professor.