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Episode 003: Angelica Ramsey, EdD

"'s continuing the great work, finding areas to improve, and understanding that it's not about you, as the Superintendent, it's about the students and what's best for them..." - Angelica Ramsey, Ed.D.

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Angelica is the new Superintendent of the Pleasant Valley School District in Camarillo, CA.  Angelica completed her tenure as the Associate Superintendent at the Santa Clara County Office of Education.  As Associate Superintendent, Angelica led the Educational Services Branch for the County office, including its charter schools.  She supported the county's public school districts through professional development, curriculum and instruction development, assessment and accountability, and district and school improvement services.  Prior to arriving at SCCOE, Angelica worked as a teacher, athletic coach, assistant principal and principal in the two-time BROAD finalist Socorro Independent School District in El Paso, Texas.  She holds degrees from the University of the Pacific, the University of Texas at El Paso and Liberty University.  Her dissertation is entitled, Nuestra Voz: A Critical Ethnographic Study of Latina School Leaders.

About The Conversation

Angelica is originally from Richmond, California, of Mexican and Chilean heritage.  Her parents' influence has been great, and is based on hard work and responsibility.  She understands that the sacrifices her parents made were important to her success.

After college, she joined the JAG Corp of the military, as a paralegal.

  • The experience taught her about honor and integrity.
  • It shaped her as an individual, internalizing certain values, including selflessness. 
  • The diversity of the military allowed her to see that "you are a piece of a larger world".

Angelica is excited that she is serving as the superintendent of the Pleasant Valley School District.

  • As her first superintendency, Angelica has relied on her mentors for guidance. 
  • Building relationships, and understanding the individual context of the district is an important first step.
  • Continuing the great work that is there is a place to start, and finding a nexus between what a new set of eyes can bring, and the work already taking place.

Part of Angelica's journey has been informed and framed by the fact that she was not a trained educator, but still found her calling in education. That calling was made clear while serving as the coach of a softball team.

  • The interest in teaching led her to do more research on the profession, and found herself attracted to the work with the Socorro Independent School District, where she began her teaching career.
  • She later became an assistant principal, where she worked hard to improve the academic achievement of students, in particular the needs of English language learners.
  • Later she served as principal of a brand new comprehensive high school.  Her focus was on ensuring that the programs the school developed served the whole child.
  • Angelica's next move was as Chief Academic Officer with the Santa Clara County Office of Education. It was an experience that allowed her to work in a district that is a "tale of two cities", with both extreme wealth, and extreme poverty.

The 3 pillars:

  • Scholarship: As superintendent she believes that she and her team are all always learning.
  • LeachershipLeadership is about building the capacity of others. "If you empower others... you are going to be better as a team."
  • AgencyThe work is about doing things for students, not to students.  It's about doing things with parents, not to parents.  Empowerment and engagement of everyone in the school district is a big part of the work.

The major challenges she faces as a leader:

  • Conveying the message that "schooling is different than it used to be".  The conversation now needs to become action - 16 years into the 21st century.
  • Having plenty of resources to meet the needs of all students.
  • Equity - "when we say all, we mean all."
  • A more holistic learning experience must be offered to student.

Resources Mentioned

  • To reach Angelica Ramsey, Ph.D.
    Twitter:  @amramsey13
    LinkedIn: angelica ramsey

  • The District Leader email:
  • You can subscribe to the District Leader on iTunes

The Sponsors
This episode is being sponsored by, where you get a FREE audiobook download and 30 day free trial at, by Isagenix, one of America’s leading health and wellness companies, and by, Education’s Daily Digest.

Additional resources
To reach Richard Carranza

You can reach Luis Valentino on Twitter, and on Facebook, at