Fort Bend ISD superintendent Charles Dupre to announce resignation

HOUSTON – Fort Bend Independent School District Superintendent of Schools Charles Dupre will announce his intention to resign by December of 2021, he confirmed to KPRC 2 on Monday.

Dupre first shared the news in a message to staff Monday morning and will make the formal announcement during the Nov. 16 meeting of the FBISD Board of Trustees.

“Over the last few years (my wife and I) talked more and more about other opportunities," Dr. Dupre said in an interview. “And then on election day, it became pretty clear that the district was going to be going through a season of transition, bringing on three new board members. So I kinda went to her and said, you know, maybe this is our sign that it’s time."

Dupre joined FBISD in 1995 as an internal auditor after 11 years as an auditor in the natural gas industry in Houston.

“That one decision point led me to this journey over the last 26 years," he said. “Starting as a lower level accountant auditor, all the way to superintendent."

“If I wanted to, I could just straight up retire, but if I don’t want to, I could go pursue many other types of opportunities,” he added. “Whether it be my own consultation business, whether it be leading another public school district, here or elsewhere.”

In his message to staff, Dupre said, in part: “My wife, Seeju, and I are in the season of life where our children are grown, and we are ready to pursue new adventures and opportunities. We have devoted a total of 19 years of service to the FBISD community, and each day has been fulfilling and meaningful. And my heart tells me it is time for a change.”

In a news release, Fort Bend ISD wrote in part:

Since his appointment as FBISD Superintendent of Schools, Dupre has worked with the Board of Trustees to develop a strong strategic framework and enact changes that have improved outcomes for all student groups, leading the District through challenges that included Hurricane Harvey and the current pandemic. In 2018, Fort Bend ISD was awarded the 2018 H-E-B Excellence in Education Award as the best school district in the large district category, and Dupre was named the Region 4 Superintendent of the Year and finalist for Texas Superintendent of the Year in 2019.

During Monday night’s board meeting, Fort Bend ISD said staff will recognize three retiring trustees and newly-elected trustees will be sworn in to begin a three-year term. The board will also elect new officers.

“I have intentionally timed this announcement to align with the pending transition on the Board because the Board of Trustees and district will be in a period of transition for a season. I am sharing this news now so that the newly-formed Board will have the opportunity to select a leader to partner with them as a member of a new Team of Eight,” Dupre said via a statement from Fort Bend ISD. “The superintendent search process takes a great deal of time, so I am providing the board notice now to enable them to develop their strategy and timeline. Once that is known, I will work with the Board to establish my formal separation from the District. Although change is coming, I remain committed to supporting staff and the Board of Trustees as we continue our efforts to serve students. I will also stand in firm support of the new Board as they focus on team building, organizational governance, launching the search for a new superintendent, and adopting a budget for the 2020-21 school year during a pandemic and economic crisis."

“The district has come a long way since Dr. Dupre returned to us eight years ago,” said Jason Burdine, FBISD’s outgoing board president. “Dr. Dupre’s integrity, student-focused approach, and commitment to excellence have propelled our district to new heights, becoming recognized as one of the most successful in the state.”

“FBISD is stronger than ever,” Burdine continued. "Dr. Dupre’s commitment to systems improvement has laid the groundwork for our district’s continued success. I want to thank Dr. Dupre for agreeing to remain with the district while the board begins the important work of finding the district’s next leader. On a personal level, I will be sad to see him leave our district. But I am very happy for Dr. Dupre and his wife Seeju and wish them every happiness as they explore the next chapter of their life.”

The news release from Fort Bend ISD added, “While tonight’s planned announcement will address Dupre’s intention to resign from the district at some point during the next year, on Friday, he contacted each trustee to express his plans to continue leading the District while the Board of Trustees conducts the search for a new superintendent."

The timeline and approach to search for a new superintendent will be discussed at an upcoming meeting, the district said in its news release about the Dupre announcement.

About the Authors:

An Edward R. Murrow award-winning journalist, Amanda Cochran is a Houston transplant from New York City who has embraced her new city with both arms -- living and breathing news and all things Texas.