EL MONTE – El Monte Union has selected Dr. Laura Rivas as its new Assistant Superintendent of Educational Services, bringing an esteemed administrator and strong communicator dedicated to student success to the District. Rivas replaces Larry Cecil, who retired in June after 36 years with El Monte Union.

Rivas, who has more than 25 years of experience in education, has served as a teacher, categorical programs advisor, assistant principal, principal and director of secondary education. An accomplished bilingual educator and relationship-builder, Rivas said she is committed to equity and meeting the academic and social-emotional needs of students and families in the District community.

“I value relationships and partnerships. Education is not a one-person job, it requires working in collaboration with educational partners,” Rivas said. “Having been a principal and director at the secondary level, I have a deep understanding of how high schools’ work. Every community has its own unique traditions and histories, just as every student has unique needs. My goal is to work toward equity in education by building upon the great work that has already been done in order to continue to improve student outcomes.”

Rivas is a passionate supporter of multi-tiered systems of support (MTSS), and attended the recent California MTSS 2023 Professional Learning Institute Conference, which focused on Equity in Action: Every Student, Every Day.

“MTSS is the framework to help us achieve equity,” Rivas said. “By taking a holistic approach to teaching, offering robust support in the classroom and focusing on the child as a whole, we can create a system that is responsive to each student, whether they need social-emotional, academic or other types of support. Through collaboration with administrators, teachers, parents and students, we can work towards more equitable outcomes for all students.”

Rivas comes to El Monte Union after four years as the Director of Secondary Education with the Rowland Unified School District, where she worked closely with principals, providing professional development, and working to strengthen the relationship between school site leaders, the District office and the community.

Prior to that, Rivas spent 10 years at Warren High School in Downey, first as assistant principal then, from 2013 to 2019, as Warren’s principal. During her time there, college and career readiness skyrocketed, with the percentage of students completing their A-G requirements increasing by nearly 15%. Warren received the California Gold Ribbon Award in 2015 for its implementation and expansion of expository reading and writing curriculum to strengthen student’s literacy skills and prepare them for a successful transition to college and beyond.

“We are proud to welcome Dr. Rivas to El Monte Union. She is a phenomenal administrator and forward-looking educator who brings a wealth of experience and dedication to academics to our executive cabinet,” Superintendent Dr. Edward Zuniga said. “We feel Dr. Rivas is an excellent communicator who will work well with our many stakeholders in the El Monte Union community.”


EMUHSD_ADMIN_1: El Monte Union High School District selects Dr. Laura Rivas, an accomplished educator and strong communicator, as the District’s new Assistant Superintendent of Educational Services.