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ESUSD Announces Organizational Changes at ESHS and ESMS

El Segundo High School

ESUSD Superintendent Melissa Moore was notified in early November that El Segundo High School Principal Dr. Jennifer Hawn has accepted the position of Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources with the Whittier City School District. She will leave her position as principal of El Segundo High School as of November 23, 2018. “Dr. Hawn has been a tremendous asset during her time with the El Segundo Unified School District and has made significant positive contributions to the education of ESHS students,” said Moore. “We regret her departure, but understand the opportunity that has presented itself. We wish her the best in her future career.”


Dr. Melissa Gooden, the current principal of El Segundo Middle School, will transition to the position of Acting Principal of El Segundo High School on November 26, 2018. Gooden brings the qualifications, experience, and leadership qualities required to serve ESHS. She has 18 years experience serving secondary students primarily in the Los Angeles Unified School District and a brief period in Glendale Unified and Fairfax County Public Schools. She began her career as a special education teacher in Virginia prior to relocating to California in 2002. She has worked in administration since 2007, serving as program specialist, district administrator, and an assistant principal for four years at Los Angeles High School before coming to ESUSD. She has considerable expertise in the areas of special education, data-based decision making, targeted interventions for students, and positive behavior intervention and support.  

Gooden earned her doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Southern California. She earned a master’s degree is in teaching from National University, and a bachelor’s degree in elementary and special education from University of Delaware. 


“Melissa Gooden is a successful administrator who has garnered substantial support from ESMS faculty due to her warm approach, consistency, and commitment to making decisions based on what is best for students,” said Moore. “She is an excellent communicator, extremely thoughtful, and a team player. Dr. Gooden is a hard worker and top notch professional who is on top of all issues she encounters.”


El Segundo Middle School

ESUSD is pleased to announce that Mr. Ali Rabiei will assume the role of Acting Principal of El Segundo Middle School for the remainder of this school year. Rabiei is a veteran administrator at ESUSD and has done an excellent job serving as Assistant Principal of El Segundo Middle School for the last two years. ESUSD administration is working to ensure that Mr. Rabiei and the ESMS community have adequate administrative support.


Ms. Sarah Davlantis will assume the role of Acting Assistant Principal of El Segundo Middle School effective December 3, 2018. Davlantis has worked for ESUSD since 2004, primarily as a teacher of social studies at El Segundo High School. She is a respected teacher/leader. In addition to being a successful teacher, she has assumed many leadership roles, serving as AVID coordinator, BTSA teacher mentor, and leadership chairperson. During her time as leadership chair, she successfully coordinated the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) mid-year review, which yielded positive accolades from the WASC visiting team. Most recently, Davlantis has served ESHS students as a teacher on special assignment in the role of intervention specialist. In this role, she monitors student performance, identifying students in need of intervention and coordinating appropriate services to affect positive outcomes. “Ms. Davlantis is an aspiring administrator and possesses an administrative credential,” said Moore. “We are certain Ms. Davlantis will be a positive addition to ESMS.”

More information will be forthcoming when ESUSD administration determines who will assume the responsibilities of the intervention specialist position.

ESUSD appreciates your continued support as the District manages these organizational changes. The District is confident there will be no disruption to the educational program, as the success of ESUSD students continues to be our top priority.