Dr. April Grace
Dr. April Grace, Shawnee Public Schools superintendent, has led the district since 2016.
Before coming to Shawnee, Dr. Grace served as assistant superintendent of Human Resources for Putnam City Schools since September 2008. As director of the HR department of the Oklahoma’s fifth-largest school district, Dr. Grace was tasked with a wide-ranging and complex job that directly affects each of the district’s 3,300-plus employees. She developed and managed hiring practices, programs and services for district personnel, directed teacher recruitment efforts, played a central role in keeping the district financially sound in an era of state budget cuts, and led yearly negotiations that culminate in a salary and working conditions agreement with teachers. She also shepherded the district through implementation of the state-required teacher and leader evaluation system and has gone on to help districts across the state and nation as they work on their own evaluation systems.
Before taking charge of Human Resources for Putnam City, Dr. Grace served Putnam City as a middle school administrator for four years and one year as a specialist helping integrate technology into teaching and learning. She was with Noble Public Schools from 2000 to 2003 as an assistant principal at Noble High School for one year and as principal of Noble Junior High School for two years. She started her career in public education as a science teacher at Norman High School.
Since 2001 Dr. Grace has been an online instructor for the University of Phoenix master’s of education program for a range of courses, including Personnel Administration in Education, Critical Issues in Education and Professional Communications. She is also an adjunct faculty member at the University of Central Oklahoma and Southern Nazarene, teaching master’s level classes in educational leadership, critical issues in education, education law and many other areas. Dr. Grace is president of the Oklahoma Association of School Personnel Administrators and a member of the Cooperative Council for Oklahoma School Administration and the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. She holds a doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of Phoenix, a master’s degree in Secondary School Administration from the University of Oklahoma and a bachelor’s degree in Science Education from the University of Oklahoma.