Hippert to bridge gap until new Fox Chapel Area superintendent arrives
By Tawnya Panizzi
Published: Wednesday, Dec. 25, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
When Linda Hippert steps in as acting superintendent of the Fox Chapel Area School District next week, it will be more as an adviser than a leader.
“When a district has me fill in, it's different than a long-term assignment,” said Hippert, executive director of the Allegheny Intermediate Unit (AIU), a group that acts as a liaison between the state Department of Education and the 42 school districts in Allegheny County.
“Any decision that would need to be made, I would be making with (newly hired superintendent) Gene Freeman.”
Freeman is expected to take the reins in March, after leaving his post as head of Manheim Township School District in Lancaster. Current Fox Chapel Area Superintendent Anne Stephens retires Jan. 1.
Hippert is pleased to fill the short-term vacancy. Her daily AIU job has equipped her with a familiarity of the district and a rapport with the administration.
“I think it's a wonderful district and I'm happy to assist,” she said. “Dr. Freeman can't be a superintendent in two places.”
He does, however, keep in daily contact with the administrative team, Hippert said.
It's those people, like Assistant Superintendent David McCommons, who will run the day-to-day operations of the district's six buildings, she said.
“That will continue as is,” she said. “Any decisions outside of those, I would consult Dr. Freeman.”
Hippert earned her master's degree from the University of Pittsburgh and a doctorate from Duquesne University. She started her career as a high school math teacher before serving as a high school principal. She was the superintendent of the South Fayette Township School District for 13 years prior to joining the AIU in 2009.
She also currently works as an adjunct faculty member at Duquesne in the Department of Leadership and Professional Development.
Highlights of Hippert's career include receiving the National Award from the University Council for Educational Administration for Excellence in Leadership, as well as the Century Club Alumni Award from Duquesne.
Her stint at Fox Chapel Area won't be the first time Hippert has stepped in for a public school superintendent. Most recently, she led West Jefferson Hills School District during its search for a new leader.
Her ability to fill the role provides administrators with some relief while waiting for a permanent leader, she said.
“This is an opportunity of my role that I can meet the district needs without them having to look outside to fill the position,” she said.
Tawnya Panizzi is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-782-2121, ext. 2 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Improvements planned for all Fox Chapel Area school buildings
- Website launched from O’Hara gaining popularity; offers reviews, original games
- Courses teach secrets of gardening at Cooper-Siegel Community Library
- Fox Chapel residents to pay more for sewage service
- Grant money could help make Aspinwall Riverfront Park entrance safer