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Richard Carranza, head of SFUSD, a finalist for Houston job

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SFUSD Superintendent Richard Carranza is reportedly a finalist to lead the largest public school system in Texas. (S.F. Examiner file photo)
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The San Francisco Unified School District is planning for the potential loss of its superintendent to Houston, where Richard Carranza is a finalist to lead the largest public school system in Texas.

Board of Education President Matt Haney confirmed Tuesday that Carranza is a top candidate in the search for a superintendent of the Houston Independent School District, after that district’s head stepped down Feb. 29.

“We’re aware that Superintendent Carranza has been recruited by Houston, and that he is a finalist,” Haney said in a statement sent in a text message to the San Francisco Examiner. “The Board of Education has met and we are prepared with a plan in the event that he leaves.”

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This is the second time this year that Carranza has been named as a candidate to head a different school district. In January, the Los Angeles Times reported that Carranza was considered to lead the Los Angeles Unified School District.

However, Carranza told the Examiner in January he had no plans to leave The City despite the media reports to the contrary. “I am committed to remaining in San Francisco,” he said at the time.

A spokesperson for the SFUSD did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday.

“If Superintendent Carranza chooses to serve in another district, the Board of Education will work together to ensure a smooth transition,” Haney said. “We have a strong foundation, a newly refreshed strategic plan, tremendous leadership in our schools and our district, and we are confident our progress will continue.”

The news comes as the school district readies for the first day of school Aug. 15. The SFUSD has been scrambling to fill vacant teacher and special aide paraprofessional positions before the school year starts.

Carranza has led the district for four years and worked as an administrator there since 2009.

The Houston school district’s Board of Education is expected to meet Wednesday to determine whether a finalist will be named or if interviews will continue, according to a news release from the HISD.

That school board plans to name someone by Aug. 1.

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