El Dorado County education board taps new schools chief

Ed Manansala
Ed Manansala

Ed Manansala was named Tuesday as the new El Dorado County superintendent of schools, replacing a predecessor who resigned in November after his second arrest for allegedly driving under the influence.

Manansala, 46, is a former superintendent of St. Hope schools in Sacramento and most recently has worked as deputy superintendent of educational services for the El Dorado County Office of Education. Manansala started Tuesday in the new job after the El Dorado County Board of Education selected him at its regular board meeting.

He replaces Jeremy Meyers, 45, who resigned Nov. 14 after two arrests on suspicion of drunken driving last year. Manansala will complete Meyers’ elected four-year term, which ends Jan. 7, 2019.

As county schools superintendent, Manansala will be responsible for fiscal oversight of El Dorado County school districts. He will lead the County Office of Education, which has 412 students at five schools. Those include charter schools and campuses that provide special education, adult education and educational programs for incarcerated youths. The office also provides payroll, printing and other administrative services to the county’s 15 small school districts.

Manansala will be paid a $196,837 annual salary and have an expense allowance of $7,600 a year, according to Dina Gentry, El Dorado County Office of Education spokeswoman.

“El Dorado County is a special place where everyone in the community is truly committed to providing a high-quality education for all students,” Manansala said in a prepared statement. “It is an honor and privilege to be selected for this role and to continue to support the fine work done by our many programs, by our school districts and by our community organizations.”

Manansala was one of 16 people who applied for the job and one of four who the board interviewed in open session for the position, Gentry said. A known commodity to the board, Manansala was publicly thanked by board President Rich Fischer for helping to keep things running at the county office while Meyers’ job status was in limbo following his Nov. 5 arrest.

Meyers was convicted in August of driving under the influence on June 9, and his conviction record indicates his blood alcohol content was higher than 0.15 percent when cited in that incident. His November arrest came after he crashed his truck into a utility box around 2 p.m. on Nov. 5 and allegedly had a blood alcohol level of 0.19 percent, more than twice the legal limit, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Dave Stevenson, investigator and spokesman for the El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office, said prosecutors are preparing a complaint to file in El Dorado Superior Court in the next several days. The complaint will include allegations that Meyers was driving under the influence, with a special allegation of DUI with a prior offense, and that he violated probation imposed in the prior episode. Pending toxicology findings, more charges could be added to the complaint, Stevenson said. No court date has been set.

The Sacramento Bee reported that the county Board of Education agreed to give Meyers a $125,000 buyout package in exchange for stepping down Nov. 14 – the equivalent of his salary, as well as medical, dental and life insurance benefits, through June. The education board could not remove Meyers because he was an elected official.

Following public outcry over Meyers’ arrests and his subsequent failure to step down or return to his job, the board held several public meetings. The board collected public comments on the preferred characteristics of a new superintendent through an online survey and public forums before conducting interviews and deliberating in an open meeting Monday.

“We wanted to take the time to thoughtfully move through this process, honor the community’s desires and make the right decision,” said Fischer in a statement. “Ed has a proven track record of integrity, effective leadership, and looking out for the county’s best interest. We look forward to his continued leadership.”

The Bee’s Loretta Kalb contributed to this report. Diana Lambert: 916-321-1090, @dianalambert

Ed Manansala

Age: 46

Education: Bachelor’s degree in business administration and human resources management and a master’s degree of social work, health, school counseling and school social work at California State University, Sacramento. Doctorate in educational leadership at UC Davis.

Experience: Deputy superintendent of educational services at the El Dorado County Office of Education; interim chief of staff at Sacramento City Unified School District; superintendent of St. Hope Public Schools and principal of Sacramento Charter High School