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Superintendent Lolli Named the 2023 Ohio Superintendent of the Year

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Dr. Lolli headshot.The Buckeye Association of School Administrators (BASA) has named Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Lolli the 2023 Ohio Superintendent of the Year. 

BASA representatives will attend the November 8th DPS Board of Education Review Session to present this prestigious award. Dr. Lolli will also be honored at the BASA Fall Conference in October of 2023. 

This annual award is presented to one superintendent in the state. The last superintendent to receive this award from Dayton Public Schools was Franklin Smith in 1989, according to BASA.

“I am very honored to be selected as the Ohio Superintendent of the Year,” Dr. Lolli said. “I am also appreciative that the efforts of the Dayton Public School District are being recognized at this level. All successful leaders are supported by high-quality team members. The entire DPS team has a part in this award. We will continue the work for all Dayton students. For me, this work is a mission — not a job.” 

Superintendents must be nominated for this award and are then judged on several criteria, including meeting the needs of students in the school system; personal and organizational communication; improvement of their administrative knowledge and skills; and participation in their community and understanding of regional and national issues.

Throughout her time as Superintendent, Dr. Lolli has worked diligently to improve the educational experience of all DPS students, which includes:

  • Increasing the number of neighborhood school centers from 5 to 10
  • Opening the district’s first School-Based Health Center at Roosevelt Elementary
  • Increasing the number of Career-Technical Pathways from 13 to 24
  • Implementing Orff-Schulwerk methodology in all elementary music classes
  • Reinstating band and choir programs
  • Improving the overall report card rating for the first time in the district’s history and recovering the report card rating for a second time to pre-COVID levels
  • Developing and implementing a double teaching model in all 1st-3rd grade classrooms, which has proven to be very effective at increasing student achievement and closing gaps (in many cases, student growth is surpassing the national norm)

Dr. Lolli has served as Superintendent since March 2018. Prior to that, she served as the district’s interim Superintendent and Associate Superintendent. Throughout her career, she has served as a classroom teacher, a music teacher, an assistant principal, principal, and curriculum director and Superintendent in two other districts. She also worked as a full-time professor and adjunct professor at Kent State University. She is a published author of one book and multiple articles in educational journals. 

Dr. Lolli has earned many awards throughout her career, including the BASA Betsy M. Cowles Women in Leadership Award; the Excellence in Educational Leadership Award from the University Council for Educational Administration; the BASA Exemplary Leadership Award for Region 13; the Outstanding Public Official Award by the AFL-CIO; the BASA Exemplary Leadership Award for Region 9; the Save the Music Foundation’s 17th Annual Administrator Award for Distinguished Support of Music Education; and she was one of two finalists for the American Association of School Administrators Women in School Leadership Award. Additionally, she has been recognized twice as one of the Dayton Business Journal’s BizWomen Power 50.

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