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Swart tapped as new school chief

New Rescue Union district superintendent to make $136,000 annually
By: Don Chaddock Telegraph Managing Editor
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The Rescue Union School District has tapped veteran educator David Swart to replace retiring Superintendent Carol Bly. The $136,000-per-year post will be taken over by Swart July 1. Swart comes up from the ranks, having been a teacher for 14 years and a principal for 10. In 2006, he ran for the post of Placer County Superintendent of Schools, losing out to Gayle Garbolino-Mojica in that race. It was shortly after the election that he started working for the Rescue Union School District in El Dorado County. “I’m very excited and I’m truly honored,” Swart said. “This is a very high-performing wonderful school district.” He said credit for the district’s success rests with the staff, not the chief. “It’s really about the people who work in our district,” he said. “We have fabulous teachers, administrators and support staff. This is a team dedicated to the kids.” Swart also served as the assistant superintendent of Auburn Union School District between 1997 and 2001. After that he worked for Educational Testing Service for more than three years. He acknowledges the budget shortfalls but said Bly had done a wonderful job working with the various unions to help curb costs. “The district doesn’t plan to fill the assistant superintendent position at this time,” Swart said, saying it is a cost-saving measure. The now-frozen position paid $100,000 per year. “This (superintendent) position has so many positive possibilities, even with the (budget problems),” he said. “It’s a great community and we have great parent involvement. We’re all over 800 with a couple of schools in the 900 (testing range).” He said Bly has done a lot to “move our district forward. I’m (also) honored to work in the county under (Superintendent of Schools) Vicki Barber. We have a great educational community.” With more than 38 years of experience in the educational field, Swart said he’s ready to take on the challenge of helming the district. “What’s really exciting for me is that I’ve been in the assistant role for many years and it’s an opportunity to actually be in a leadership position,” Swart said. “For me it was a matter of perfect timing. I had knowledge of the district and knew the operations, and we didn’t want (a) delay in the curriculum. There are many challenges I also see as opportunities.” There are seven schools in the district, with most of them in El Dorado Hills. The district serves 3,695 students between kindergarten and eighth grade, according to the county’s Office of Education website. “Mr. Swart embodies all of the criteria that the board identified as necessary to move Rescue … into the future,” a letter signed by the board of trustees for the district states. The letter also describes Swart as “calm” and “creative.” District officials could not be reached for comment by press time due to the school holidays.