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Huntington Beach Union High School District

Superintendent Dr. Clint Harwick Announces Retirement

HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. - Clint Harwick, Ed.D., announces his retirement from the Huntington Beach Union High School District (HBUHSD) after serving seven years as superintendent, effective August 2024.

In Dr. Harwick’s 36 years in education, he has held many roles at various levels which have shaped him into the leader he is today. Starting as a school custodian, he garnered a passion for helping students and staff within a school community. This passion propelled him to further his education to become a teacher, site administrator, and eventually, superintendent. Dr. Harwick’s love for helping others succeed and creating positive learning environments allowed him to flourish as a superintendent for 21 years between Rim of the World Unified School District, Charter Oak Unified School District, and Saddleback Valley Unified School District, before landing at HBUHSD.

During his tenure at HBUHSD, Dr. Harwick has been the driving force behind many significant accomplishments and projects on school campuses. In the classroom, student learning opportunities have grown immensely through the expansion of Career Technical Education (CTE), providing them with valuable industry skills and pathways to future success. Students have also had increased accessibility to earn college credit, with the dual enrollment program growing from 30 to over 7,000 students district-wide. School sites have also seen improvements under Dr. Harwick’s leadership, including facility updates such as new pools, fields, and stadiums, as well as campus beautification projects and HVAC updates.

Dr. Harwick has also been a huge advocate for student success and staff well-being. Under his leadership, HBUHSD has built an emphasis on inclusivity through the expansion of Unified Sports, the creation of Unified Arts, and the implementation of two new wellness centers for students and staff on school campuses. Dr. Harwick’s empathetic and genuine nature has fostered a family-first culture throughout each of HBUHSD’s campuses and the district office, creating an environment where every individual feels valued, supported, and empowered to thrive.

On top of site accomplishments and improvements, HBUHSD has seen the success of many educators under the guiding influence of Dr. Harwick. As an Association of California School Administrators Region 17 Superintendent of the Year, he has set a precedent of excellence for site leaders. In turn, many principals and teachers have been recognized for their achievements through regional and state-wide awards, proving that success begins at the helm with a collaborative and charismatic leader.

HBUHSD Board President Dr. Duane Dishno exclaimed, “Dr. Harwick has played such a critical role in affecting the climate, attitude, and reputation of our schools! He has provided momentum and direction by pairing his vision for our students and our schools with an unrelenting passion for instructional improvement. Most importantly, he has conveyed a sense of connection and belonging by helping all of us to understand that we succeed and fail together. Our students and staff have felt safe and cared for under his leadership. Dr. Harwick has inspired the best in every member of our district team. While we wish him well in his retirement, his smile and compassion will be missed.”

When addressing HBUHSD staff about his retirement, Dr. Harwick expressed his amazement in what they do every day in supporting students’ sense of exploration and fostering growth academically, emotionally, and socially. “Over the last seven years, I have been truly blessed to watch some of the best educators and support providers in the county make magical connections with students and help them be successful,” shared Dr. Harwick. “We have celebrated teachers of the year, classified employees, and administrators of the year. We have won CIF titles, artistic awards, and been demonstration sites for countless programs. We have also faced some challenges including fiscal issues, political changes, and even a worldwide pandemic. The best part is, we always did it together.”

The HBUHSD Board of Trustees met in a special closed session meeting on Saturday, March 16, to discuss the next steps in selecting the next superintendent. As they move forward in this process, they remain committed to finding a leader who exemplifies the HBUHSD values of inclusivity, innovation, and a family-first culture, all while embodying the mission to “educate, prepare, and inspire our students to change the world.”

Dr. Harwick talking at podium

Dr. Harwick and board members presenting MHS pool plaque

Dr. Harwick and staff celebrating ACSA Region 17 superintendent of the year award