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LAUSD Board Names Deputy Superintendent As Austin Beutner’s Interim Successor

Megan Reilly, then the L.A. Unified School District's Chief Financial Officer, embraces former LAUSD Superintendent Michelle King during a board meeting on March 14, 2017.
Megan Reilly, right, then the L.A. Unified School District's Chief Financial Officer, embraces former LAUSD Superintendent Michelle King during a board meeting on March 14, 2017. Reilly was leaving LAUSD after a decade for a job in Santa Clara County's Office of Education. She returned to LAUSD in 2019 as a deputy superintendent.
(Screenshot
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LAUSD)
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Megan K. Reilly, who’s been a top financial officer in the Los Angeles Unified School District for 12 of the last 14 years, has been selected to succeed Austin Beutner as superintendent — at least temporarily.

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LAUSD Board Names Deputy Superintendent As Austin Beutner’s Interim Successor

LAUSD board members announced Friday that they had asked Reilly to take over as interim superintendent on July 1, the day after Beutner’s three-year contract is due to expire.

Board president Kelly Gonez announced the decision following a unanimous vote in a closed-door meeting on Friday afternoon.

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“The board has full faith in Ms. Reilly’s ability to sustain the district’s efforts to support students and families and ensure a seamless transition,” Gonez said.

LAUSD is now on the hunt for its fourth non-interim superintendent in a decade. Beutner, who led the nation’s second-largest school district during a teachers' strike and the turbulence of the global pandemic, announced earlier this week that he would not seek a contract extension.

Who Is Megan Reilly?

Reilly came to LAUSD in 2007 after almost two decades working as a top business official for the U.S. Navy’s postgraduate school in Monterey, and for the Fleet Numerical Meteorology & Oceanography Center. She’s also a licensed attorney and member of the State Bar of California.

Reilly’s first stint with LAUSD lasted 10 years.

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As Chief Financial Officer during a period of historic budget challenges for K-12 schools in California — and more LAUSD-specific fears about the school district’s finances — she often took on the task of delivering grim financial projections. (Many of the worst-case scenarios in those forecasts, delivered by Reilly and other LAUSD financial officers, have not materialized.)

Reilly left LAUSD in 2017 for a similar post at the Santa Clara County Office of Education. She returned to become Beutner’s deputy superintendent for business services and operations.

In that role, Reilly “has been integral to the success of the Grab & Go meal distribution centers,” Gonez continued, “the distribution of devices and hot spots to students and educators, and meeting the complex demands of the reopening of our schools.”

Gonez said that “official action will follow at an upcoming board meeting,” suggesting the terms of Reilly’s contract are not yet finalized.

Corrected April 23, 2021 at 6:44 PM PDT
A previous version of this story incorrectly said Reilly's first LAUSD stint lasted seven years. It was 10 years. LAist regrets the error.