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Katrise Perera will leave in June to take a job in a Texas school district to be closer to her family.

PMG FILE PHOTO - Superintendent Katrise Perera is leaving the Gresham-Barlow School District for a Texas dsitrict as of June 30. She's seen here greeting students prior to the pandemic.

Katrise Perera, superintendent of the Gresham-Barlow School District announced Wednesday, March 31, that she is leaving the district after four years to take a superintendent's job in Texas.

Perera will leave at the end of this school year for the top job in the Lancaster Independent School District in Texas.

"It has been a great honor to serve the students, staff, families and community of the Gresham-Barlow School District," Perera said in the announcement Wednesday, March 31.

"The decision to leave GSBD has been a difficult one; however, this opportunity will allow me to live closer to my family, who need support and assistance.

Lancaster is a suburban community in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex.

The 11,690-student Gresham Barlow District is much larger than the Lancaster District, which has about 7,460 students.

Earlier in the day, the Lancaster district posted a quote from Perera that said, "The Lancaster ISD Board of Trustees has afforded me a fantastic opportunity to build upon this community's educational vision — and I am beyond grateful."

She said she was excited to be the district's first female superintendent and "doing so in a state that I consider home is a gift."

The Gresham-Barlow announcement noted that during Perera's tenure, graduation rates in the district were on the rise, new career and technical education programs were established and a dual language immersion was started.

On Perera's watch, most of the bond projects, including the replacement of two elementary schools and major expansion and renovation at two high schools, were completed.

Perera took charge of the district in 2017.

Prior to coming to Gresham, she was an executive at publishing house McGraw-Hill Education. She was superintendent of the Isle of Wright County Schools in Virginia from 2011-15.

She was named Superintendent of the Year in 2015 by the National Association of School Superintendents.

The school board is in charge of hiring a new superintendent and will determine the next steps. The next board meeting is Thursday, April 1.

Perera's last day will be June 30.

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