PYLUSD Welcomes Dr. Elsasser as New PYLUSD Superintendent

PYLUSD+Welcomes+Dr.+Elsasser+as+New+PYLUSD+Superintendent

“I want to ensure our organization continues to expand and develop unique opportunities for students of all ages to get connected to their educational experience and school community.”

“In my new role as Superintendent of the Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District, I foresee the continued navigation of the COVID-19 pandemic as one of the biggest challenges I will face,” stated Dr. James Elsasser, who was appointed as PYLUSD superintendent on November 10, 2020 following the retirement of Dr. Greg Plutko.

Previously, Dr. Elsasser served for nine years as the Superintendent of Claremont Unified School District.
In an interview with the Matador Messenger, Dr. Elsasser focused on the challenges of reopening PYLUSD schools safely during the pandemic as well as his plans for the future of PYLUSD.

“Together, district and school leaders, teachers, classified staff, and our entire community will play a crucial role in reopening school campuses full-time when state and local officials allow us to do so,” added Dr. Elsasser.

Currently, PYLUSD is operating in a hybrid system at all grade levels, with some students attending two days a week in alternating “cohorts” while others joining via Zoom at home. Some students have the choice also of learning completely remotely at home.

Dr. Elsasser expressed a desired to create connections while expanding opportunities for PYLUSD students. “Whether it be in the area of academics, athletics, arts, or activities,” expressed Elsasser, “I want to ensure our organization continues to expand and develop unique opportunities for students of all ages to get connected to their educational experience and school community.”

Dr. Elsasser cited PYLUSD as an educational destination in Southern California and one of the premier school districts in the state. “I take great pride in leading an organization where the community invests heavily in our schools and, in turn, we are able to give back to our students, employees, families, and community members,” added Dr.Elsasser.

According to a biographical post on the PYLUSD website, Dr. Elsasser began his career in education in Downey, teaching beginning and advanced band and vocal music to middle school students, followed by eight years spent as a middle school principal and director of classified personnel in the Los Alamitos Unified School District.

Before arriving in Claremont, Dr. Elsasser was Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources in the Anaheim Elementary School District. Prior to this role, he spent eight years as a middle school principal and director of classified personnel in the Los Alamitos Unified School District. As a talented musician, Dr. Elsasser launched his career in Downey teaching beginning and advanced band and vocal music to middle school students.

 In 2017, Dr. Elsasser was named “ Region 15 Superintendent of the Year” by the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) for “”his visionary leadership and student-centric approach to his work. “

Dr. Elsasser’s connection to PYLUSD also extends to his personal life and family.

“For 23 years, I have lived locally with my wife and three children. I understand the important role our school district plays within Placentia, Yorba Linda, Anaheim, Fullerton and Brea–the five cities we serve,” he concluded.