Dr. Art Cavazos is a nationally recognized leader with over 30 years of experience in education.
In May, he retired from Harlingen CISD in the Rio Grande Valley, where he had served as superintendent since 2013.
As superintendent, Cavazos drove the development of a strategic plan for Harlingen CISD that involved more than 800 community members and set a course for high student achievement. Under his leadership, the district passed a tax ratification election to address urgent facility needs, created Harlingen CISD Robotics, an initiative to bring authentic learning experiences to students in the field of STEM, and opened the Dr. Abraham P. Cano Freshman Academy, the Harlingen School of Health Professions, a Transition Academy for students with special needs, a Performance Arts Center that includes a Conservatory for the Arts and the Aquatic Center which provides swimming lessons to all 2nd graders district wide. Additionally, during his tenure HCISD was transformed to a district of choice with over fourteen specialty schools.
Before being named superintendent, Cavazos served as the district’s interim superintendent and deputy superintendent for transformation and school support. During that time, Cavazos spearheaded a digital classroom initiative and helped to implement dual language academies and transform libraries into Information Literacy Centers with campus Internet Cafes. He also led the creation of the district’s first Early College High School in 2007.
Prior to that role, he was assistant superintendent for secondary education, where he led and coached principals and directors and led planning, design and opening of new campuses and remodels of existing schools.
Cavazos began his career in education as a math teacher at Edinburg CISD in 1987. He moved to McAllen ISD in 1990, where he worked as a math teacher, counselor, and principal. In 1996, he was director of secondary education in Mission CISD.
Throughout his career, Cavazos has been named 2017 Region 1 Superintendent of the Year, as well as Texas PTA’s 2017 Superintendent of the Year. In 2014, he became the second administrator from Texas to earn the national Distinguished School Administrators Award by the American Association of School Librarians for his efforts to advance library and literacy services.
In November 2014, Cavazos was selected by the U.S. Department of Education as one of 100 top school leaders from across America to participate in the first-ever National ConnectED Superintendents Summit at the White House. The unique conference brought together educators and officials from across America to share promising approaches to using technology in classes.
Dr. Cavazos holds a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in education from the University of Texas Pan-American and a doctorate in education from The University of Texas at Austin.