Michelle Hubbard named next superintendent for the Shawnee Mission School District

Michelle Hubbard

Michelle Hubbard will take over as the next superintendent of the Shawnee Mission School District in July. She will replace Mike Fulton, who is retiring. Hubbard is in her sixth year in SMSD and currently serves as Deputy Superintendent. Image courtesy SMSD.

Michelle Hubbard will be the next superintendent of the Shawnee Mission School District. 

The Board of Education unanimously approved the appointment of Hubbard Monday night.

Hubbard is currently the district’s Deputy Superintendent and will take over for outgoing Superintendent Mike Fulton, who is retiring, in July.

The board unanimously approved a three-year contract for Hubbard that will last through June 2024. No other terms of the contract were immediately released.

“I am so honored to be chosen as the next superintendent,” Hubbard told the board in brief remarks Monday night. “As a resident and parent of Shawnee Mission Schools, I am deeply committed to our current and future success.”

Hubbard is in her sixth year with Shawnee Mission, where she served as an associate superintendent until her promotion to Deputy Superintendent in January.

Prior to SMSD, she spent nearly a quarter century in the nearby Turner School District in Kansas City, Kan., where she served the final seven years of her tenure there as superintendent.

She has lived within the boundaries of Shawnee Mission Schools for 17 years, according to a district statement.

“Our mission will be to continue to strengthen the learning experience so all students can achieve their full potential,” Hubbard said in a release after Monday’s meeting. “I look forward to working with the Board of Education, SMSD staff, families and students, to carry out the commitments our community made through the strategic plan, so we can remain SMSD strong.”

Hubbard has been the administrator this year most directly in charge of designing SMSD’s remote learning program amid the coronavirus pandemic. This summer, she had to apologize for comments about remote learning she made in a video posted to her daughter’s Snapchat account.

Before the vote on her appointment Monday, she helped lead a presentation about the district’s plan to return secondary students to full-time, in-person learning starting March 22.

Several board members also noted her involvement in designing the district’s current strategic plan.

“You are intimately familiar with our community’s goals and how to get us there,” Board President Heather Ousley said Monday. “I look forward to working with you in the years to come.”

Fulton announced his retirement, effective July 1, earlier this year, and the board opted to conduct an internal search for his replacement.

Multiple board members on Monday alluded to the strength of other candidates the board interviewed, but they said, ultimately, that Hubbard stood out.

Speaking to Hubbard at Monday’s meeting, Fulton congratulated her and expressed confidence in her appointment.

“You are a wonderful colleague, care deeply about children and you are going to be a fantastic superintendent,” he said.