TASA’s “Inspiring Leaders” tagline is not just a reminder of TASA’s commitment to leadership development; it describes our members themselves — school leaders who inspire others as they work to prepare future-ready students. Meet John Chapman, one of those Inspiring Leaders.
Educating the whole child is a lifelong passion for Dr. John Chapman III, superintendent of schools in Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD. Chapman has been an administrator for 17 years and a superintendent for 21 years. He believes in meeting and supporting the whole child’s needs, and invests his time building relationships with staff, families and the community. During his tenure in CFBISD, his motto has been “Together We Can.”
Chapman believes that a school’s job is not just to teach academics, but also to help children develop character, teach them life lessons, and inspire them to be accountable.
“Success should not be measured on grades alone, but on acquiring new skills and working toward being better than you were the previous day,” Chapman says. “In today’s age of accountability, we cannot lose focus on educating the whole child, not just the partial child.”
Other administrators in CFBISD are quick to sing Chapman’s praises, touching on the unique perspective and dedication he brings to the job.
“What separates him from other leaders is his genuine passion for children,” says Steve Bassett, chief financial officer for the district. “As a child, he experienced various hardships, and as a result, he understands many of the struggles our children experience. His passion is evident in the way he cares for students and his staff by developing programming that will benefit all families.”
As a new superintendent in CFBISD in 2018, Chapman understood the importance of building solid relationships. He held open office hours several times each week and invited staff, community members, current, and former families to come to share their ideas and suggestions. As a direct result, Chapman launched several initiatives to meet the most basic needs of the whole child, including offering free counseling services and family meals.
“Dr. Chapman is hugely passionate in his never-ending quest to educate the whole child,” says Brian Moersch, area superintendent. “He employs an extraordinary work ethic as he works to move CFBISD closer to eliminating opportunity and achievement gaps for all students.”
Chapman believes changing a generation starts at the top. Among his staff, he serves as a model to inspire and motivate others, resulting in a school district culture that is all about the kids.
“It is vital to mold, develop, and build leaders of tomorrow,” he says. “Finding individuals with a servant heart and a strong desire to make a positive difference in the lives of the children we serve is critical to educating our students.”
Through his vision and his dedication to leading by example, Chapman has created a positive work environment for staff in CBISD, who feel supported and appreciated.
Associate Superintendent of Schools Dana West says: “Dr. Chapman is a thoughtful leader. Before he moves forward or makes a decision, he researches, confers and considers multiple pathways. The well-being of staff, students and the community is always first and foremost.”MEET MORE INSPIRING LEADERS