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West Allegheny School District Welcomes Two New District Administrators

West Allegheny School District is excited to announce the hiring of Tammy Adams as the new assistant to the superintendent for special education and student services and Dr. Shana Nelson as the new assistant to the superintendent for curriculum, instruction, and professional learning unanimously approved by the school board of directors present at the March 21 legislative meeting.

Previously serving as superintendent of the South Side Area School District for five years, Adams brings over 25 years of exemplary experience in education to her new position at West Allegheny.  Prior to serving as superintendent, Adams held the positions of acting superintendent, assistant superintendent, director of pupil services and emotional support teacher at South Side Area School District.  Her extensive and expert knowledge in gifted and special education reflects her passion for student advocacy and has garnered Adams distinction at the state level.  Her experience in all aspects of student services including interagency partnerships, counseling services, nursing services, and mandates will benefit West Allegheny tremendously.  Adams will be joining the District team on July 1, filling the role of Elaine Fitzgerald who will retire after 30 years of distinguished service and commitment to West Allegheny.

"Directing the Student Services and Special Education Programs in the South Side Area School District has been a focal point of my educational career; thus, being provided with the opportunity to again serve in this capacity is an honor, especially in a high performing school district such as West Allegheny,” said Adams. “I genuinely look forward to working in partnership with the deserving students and their supportive families, the governing leadership team, the exemplary staff and the engaged community as together we advance the shared vision of the West Allegheny School District."  

Dr. Shana Nelson joins West Allegheny from Pittsburgh Public Schools where she served as a teacher for six years, elementary principal for four years, and a leadership specialist for the last four years.  With over 14 years of experience in education, she brings to West Allegheny a robust and deep knowledge of research-based best educational practices in professional learning, curriculum and instruction, strategic systems thinking and data analysis. Nelson was an accomplished principal in the Pittsburgh Public Schools, leading a transformational K-8 school resulting in double-digit increases in the number of students scoring proficient and advanced on the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment tests. She is also recognized by Duquesne University as a Distinguished Graduate Alumni Fellow where she completed her Doctorate and Superintendent Letter of Eligibility.  Officially joining the District team on July 1, Nelson fills the role of Dr. Christine Assetta who has served the District for 31 years with excellence and unwavering compassion. 

“It is truly an honor to join such an amazing team of hard working educators,” said Nelson. “As the new assistant to the superintendent for curriculum, instruction, and professional learning, I look forward to partnering with the West Allegheny community to ensure our students have access to a rigorous standards-aligned curriculum and high-quality instruction every day to prepare them for success in college and their future careers. I am confident that together we will build upon the West Allegheny tradition of excellence and work collaboratively toward a shared vision for tomorrow.”

“Although it is with heavy hearts that we say goodbye to Mrs. Fitzgerald and Dr. Assetta after three decades of exemplary service to our District, I am extremely excited to welcome both Mrs. Adams and Dr. Nelson to the West Allegheny team,” stated Dr. Jerri Lynn Lippert, superintendent of West Allegheny School District.  “They exemplify servant leadership as well as a student-centered advocacy approach to their work, which will greatly complement our staff and students.  Their professional expertise will contribute to the work of our Framework for Excellence and continue to accelerate West Allegheny School District forward as we ensure all of our students are career and college ready.  Adams and Nelson are both highly regarded amongst the districts they serve and have won state and national recognitions for their contributions to their districts.  We are extremely fortunate to have them join our team and support our continued growth and tradition of excellence.”  

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