The Tucson Unified School District is looking to add two new administrators, saying it will help in its effort to increase student support and strengthen curriculum.

The hirings are the direct result of two recently conducted audits that focused on teaching, learning and efficiency.

The positions, which TUSD Superintendent H.T. Sanchez hopes to have filled by the beginning of the school year, are assistant superintendent for student services and director of curriculum design. The assistant superintendent will be paid $105,000 to $120,000 a year, depending on experience, while the director could earn as much as $85,000 annually.

While the positions are new, Sanchez doesn’t expect that they will cost the district more money because he plans to cover pay by shifting existing posts.

The new assistant superintendent will oversee the equity department, exceptional education, school counseling, student assignment and school safety. The division will ensure greater attention to student support on campuses, the execution of the student rights and responsibilities handbook, and promoting advanced learning opportunities.

The director position is part of an effort to build up a true curriculum department — something TUSD has been lacking for nearly five years, Sanchez said.

The director’s position is a step toward creating a department that incorporates curriculum design, professional development and data analysis, he said.

“If we execute each of these three functions, our students will do well on any high-stakes accountability test,” Sanchez said. “They will do well not because they were taught to the test; rather, they will do well because they were taught major concepts and how to reason through them.”

While the district is still assessing which roles will be eliminated, consolidated or readjusted as part of the reorganization, Sanchez expects that the moves will save about one and a half director level salaries —more than $112,000 — by merging responsibilities and positions.

Sanchez characterized the hirings as an important first step, noting that “your organizational structure dictates your priorities.”

The absence of a true curriculum department in the past conveyed the message that “there was no priority in developing curriculum,” he said.

Contact reporter Alexis Huicochea at or 573-4175. On Twitter @AlexisHuicochea

Contact reporter Alexis Huicochea at or 573-4175. On Twitter @AlexisHuicochea

Education writer for #ThisIsTucson. Mom of one.