EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – Diana Sayavedra is officially the El Paso Independent School District superintendent, the first woman to be appointed to the permanent position in the district’s 130-year history.

Sayavedra begins her tenure as superintendent on Jan. 3. She recently served as interim-superintendent for the Fort Bend Independent School District, which has 77,000 students.

El Paso Matters reports Sayavedra will be paid a $277,000 salary for a three-year contract.

“I believe in the potential of every student in EPISD to reach unprecedented heights. As a collaborative leader, I will work together with the incredible team of educators in El Paso ISD to guarantee that every child has access to a world-class education,” Sayavedra stated in an EPISD news release. “I am committed to connecting with students, partnering with parents, listening to employees and working with community leaders to create innovative learning experiences in making this part of the Borderland a model for public education in the United States.”

She was named the finalist for the position on Nov. 15, after the school board considered three other candidates. The school district by law had to wait 21 days before officially appointing her to the position.

“Ms. Sayavedra is a dedicated educator who understands communities like ours and who has made it her mission to create instructional opportunities for students of all backgrounds,” Al Velarde, the board president said. “The Board of Trustees is in full agreement that our historic vote to hire our first Latina superintendent will have a positive impact in the lives of children for many years to come.”

Sayavedra is a native of Laredo, Texas and has experience as a teacher and campus principal.

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