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Dublin Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Hanke Announces Retirement

January 26, 2016
Dublin Unified School District Superintendent Dr Stephen Hanke

Superintendent Dr. Stephen Hanke

DUBLIN, CA — Dr. Stephen Hanke, who has served as Superintendent of the Dublin Unified School District for the past 10 years, announced his retirement Tuesday night at the Board of Trustees meeting.

Hanke’s retirement from the position will be effective June 30, 2016.

The Board of Trustees will immediately begin the process of preparing the search for Dr. Hanke’s “I have had the wonderful opportunity to serve the Dublin community for the past 10 years, and am especially proud to be a part of an amazing team of leaders and teachers who have worked very hard to build our school district into what it is today, a highly sought-after, strong organization focused on what really matters, student learning,” Dr. Hanke said. “This decision is a difficult one for me to make and has been on my mind for a time. After much discussion with my family, we have decided the time is right to take this step.”

Dr. Hanke’s stewardship of the Dublin Unified School District, which began in July 2006, has led the district to unprecedented levels of achievement and success: Dublin saw its Academic Performance Index climb every year during his tenure to an all-time high of 904 in 2013, the last year the API was measured by the state. Six schools have been named California Distinguished Schools since 2006. Dougherty Elementary became the district’s first National Blue Ribbon School. Dublin, under the leadership of Dublin Partners In Education, began the STEM Enrichment Academy Program, which will serve approximately 500 students in its third year this summer.

He has successfully shepherded the district to define its core values, using the Vision 20/20 Strategic Plan as its guide; moved the district through its work as a Professional Learning Community and through significant changes brought by the implementation of the Common Core State Standards and Smarter Balanced Assessments. Dublin was among the highest-scoring school districts in Alameda County when the first SBAC scores were released last fall.

Dublin, under his leadership, has been a regional leader in putting technology in classrooms, has maintained financial stability through difficult financial times, fostered lasting, productive partnerships in the community and laid the groundwork for an ever-expanding offering of programs and opportunities for all students.

Dr. Hanke has also led Dublin Unified through a period of rapid growth and expansion, including 40 modernization projects district wide; the addition of three elementary schools (Green, Kolb and Amador), Fallon Middle School and the $120 million expansion of Dublin High School into one of the top high school facilities in the state.

Dublin School Board Trustee Dan Cunningham

Dan Cunningham

“Dr. Hanke has done a tremendous job over the last 10 years transforming the culture of our district,” Board President Dan Cunningham said. “He has been instrumental in the success of our schools. During his tenure, DUSD has experienced increasing student success, evidenced by a decade of rising test scores. Because of his leadership our students are better prepared for college and career. Most importantly, Steve has helped change the culture of the district in to one of continual improvement, a true Professional Learning Community where the focus is on the success of all our students. We wish Steve the best in his retirement.”

Prior to his tenure in Dublin, Dr. Hanke served as a teacher, principal, assistant superintendent in four school districts, including six years as the Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources in the Las Virgenes Unified School District.


  1. Judy Fessenden permalink
    January 27, 2016 3:35 pm

    Heartfelt congratulations, Dr. Hanke.! You’ve been an inspiration to so many for so long…encouraging your students and teachers (including me!) to be the best they can be. Thank you for kindling the flame in so many of us. Judy Fessenden

  2. Howard M. Hamilton permalink
    January 28, 2016 12:18 am

    I had the pleasure of working closely with Dr. Hanke in another school district. He is a wonderful example of commitment to excellence. Dublin has been very fortunate to have him at the helm for these past 10 years. I wish him well in his next chapter…Howard Hamilton, Ph.D., Superintendent, retired

  3. Kathy Asher permalink
    January 28, 2016 11:31 am

    Congratulations, Dr. Hanke! Through the years that I have been so honored to work with you and call you my friend, I have seen countless examples of your representation of all that is good in education. Your passion for bringing thoughtful initiatives to the districts you have served, always keeping at the forefront what is good for students, is and has been a shining example of how your leadership makes a significant difference I wish you the very best that life has to offer. Kathy Asher

  4. Pat FitzGerald permalink
    January 29, 2016 7:57 am

    Congratulations Dr. Hanke. I had the good fortune to work with him for many years from the time we were both teachers. He has always worked for his students. Whenever a decision had to be made, he would stop and go back to what would be best for students. He also realized that it is the teacher who truly makes the difference with kids. As such he worked to empower teachers so they could have the most positive impact on their students. I learned from him and feel privileged to call him my friend. He has earned some rest, but I doubt he will. It is only on to the next challenge. Bon Voyage Steve!


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