Exclusive interview with new Round Rock superintendent


by TERRI GRUCA / KVUE News and Photojournalist DATHAN HULL

Bio | Email | Follow: @TerriG_KVUE


Posted on October 3, 2013 at 9:45 PM

Updated Friday, Oct 4 at 7:13 AM

ROUND ROCK -- For the first time in seven years, the Round Rock Independent School District has a new superintendent.

KVUE sat down with Dr. Steve Flores who said he couldn't be more ready.

Sometimes life takes you full circle. Thursday night was not just Stony Point High School's homecoming, it was a homecoming of sorts for Flores.

Eight years ago he served as an assistant superintendent for Round Rock ISD, the district he now leads. He and his family are on familiar ground.

"My wife taught for seven years in the district,” Flores said. “My children attended schools here for seven years."

Since starting work Tuesday Dr. Flores has visited eight campuses.

"The lens I will utilize as superintendent is that of a parent," he said.

He believes parents and teachers are the keys to a world class education, not tests.

"I believe in the end, if you stay with a relevant, rigorous course load, then I believe the standardized tests will take care of themselves," Flores said.

His priority? Pushing Round Rock's model of education forward so students can compete globally. It's a tough challenge. State funding cuts coupled with massive growth have pushed some schools to their limits.                           

"What I'd like to see is to review where that growth is,” he said. “Will it continue to be in that fashion? Then to have a master plan or a long range plan to determine what is best needed for us to be ahead of growth."

Round Rock ISD gained 970 students each of the last five years. The student population rose above 46,700 this year. That's about 10,000 more students than a decade ago.

As much as Dr. Flores is enjoying his return down memory lane, he's even more excited to be able to help shape the future.

"I look forward to the work ahead and for what the future of Round Rock holds for our students, our staff and our entire community," Flores said.

Flores comes to Round Rock ISD after serving as superintendent for Harlingen CISD in the Rio Grande Valley for five years.

Former Round Rock ISD Superintendent Dr. Jesus Chavez also worked as Harlingen CISD superintendent before coming to Round Rock. Dr. Chavez is staying on as an advisor to Dr. Flores until his retirement at the end of the year.