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Two more Denver Public Schools officials are leaving the district

Susana Cordova chosen as finalist in DPS superintendent search, final decision coming Dec. 17
Posted at 4:33 PM, Nov 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-18 18:37:11-05

DENVER — Two more Denver Public Schools officials are leaving the district, including a deputy superintendent, outgoing Superintendent Susana Cordova announced Wednesday.

Mark Ferrandino, deputy superintendent of operations, and Jennifer Holladay, associate chief of portfolio management, will be leaving Colorado's largest school district over the next two months.

Ferrandino is taking over the role of executive director at Colorado's Department of Revenue, beginning in late December. Holladay is leaving the school district in early January.

The announcement of their departures follows Cordova's announcement last week that she will be leaving the Denver district for a position with the Dallas Independent School District in Texas.

"The timing is, undeniably, difficult," Cordova said in her announcement about Ferrandino and Holladay leaving. "But I want to assure all of you that these changes are not the result of my decision to pursue a new opportunity. Team DPS remains resilient and strong across the city because of the dedication, the talent, and the enormous heart of our people."

Cordova praised Ferrandino and Holladay for their work.

Ferrandino joined the district's finance office in 2014 and was named deputy superintendent two years ago. Cordova said Ferrandino has been "instrumental in ensuring that students had access to food, technology, and the internet" amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

"I have always appreciated Mark’s positive outlook and belief that we can solve what seem like insurmountable problems, and his quick wit and buoyant laugh are a tremendous boost during hard times," Cordova wrote.

Holladay joined the district's portfolio management team in 2013.

"Integrity is the word that first comes to my mind to describe Jen — she has so much integrity," Cordova wrote. "She brings a strong, principled voice to every discussion, and I deeply appreciate her efforts here in DPS."

Parents of Denver students expressed frustration last week over Cordova's departure, criticizing the district and blaming the school board.

Denver isn't the only major district experiencing a change in leadership amid the hurdles of COVID-19. Douglas and Jefferson County school districts have also seen superintendents depart this year.