About RCOE | History
Dr. David Long, 10th Riverside County Superintendent of Schools
January 4, 1999-June 30, 2007
Dr. David Long has been a teacher, coach, principal and superintendent for more than four decades. Originally from Mason City, Iowa, he came to California as the Superintendent for the Banning Unified School District in 1989 and then the Superintendent for Lake Elsinore Unified School District in 1992.
As the Riverside County Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Long established three goals at the beginning of his tenure, improve student reading skills as the gateway skill to academic success, make schools safer so that students can learn, and improve communities through community/business/school partnerships and collaboration.
Immediately after taking office, Dr. Long started the Riverside County Reading Task Force to highlight his emphasis on reading, including Reading Runs that put thousands of free books into the hands of students who pledged to read for 15 minutes a day.
He created the Safe Schools Unit to address school safety, and through collaboration with the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department, added a full-time liaison between the County Office of Education and law enforcement who was housed at the County Office of Education and who also coordinated school resource officer programs.
He created the Riverside County Achievement Teams to help underperforming schools reach state mandated achievement goals. He started Connect to Achieve, which put teams of professionals in schools to work with at-risk youth, linking safety and achievement.
Dr. Long also transformed the Community Action Planning program he used successfully in school districts to build community programs to benefit youth into a county-wide program that eventually placed full emphasis on schools as the annual Education Summit.
Dr. Long established a matrix of services to be offered by the County Office of Education by first surveying local district superintendents. He established new working relationship between the Riverside County Superintendent of Schools and the Riverside County Board of Education and was instrumental in pushing new legislation placing fiscal limits on county superintendents of schools statewide.
Dr. Long made RCAT, Safe Schools, and Connect to Achieve programs, among others, into state and national models. Because of his leadership on a state and national level, he was selected as California Secretary of Education by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger in March, 2007, and assumed his new appointed role on July 1, 2007.