Dr. Christine Johns - Superintendent of Schools

Photo of Dr. Christine Johns

Dr. Christine Johns has served as Superintendent of Utica Community Schools since 2006. Under Dr. Johns' leadership, Michigan’s second largest school district has been at the forefront of implementing educational improvements to promote a college culture that is focused on the success of every child. UCS students perform at levels above state and national averages.  All four UCS high schools were honored as among the best high schools in the nation by Newsweek magazine and the district’s Utica Academy for International Studies (UAIS) was recognized as the state’s most academically challenging school by the Washington Post.

Under Dr. Johns’ leadership, Utica Community Schools has earned a national reputation for the effective use of technology to leverage teaching and learning in district classrooms. The district's blended learning model in kindergarten through second grade has attracted national attention for its focus on creating personalized instruction for every student.

Utica Community Schools became a charter member of Digital Promise – the League of Innovative Schools that was established by Congress.  The League is a network of forward thinking superintendents who leverage technology to improve student learning by partnering with researchers and entrepreneurs.  The initiative has connected UCS with our country’s top technology innovators and provides professional development opportunities for our teachers to study the effective use of technology.  Through the League’s national networks, Dr. Johns has twice been invited to the White House as one of 120 superintendents recognized for innovation and leadership of Future Ready Schools.

As Superintendent, Dr. Johns has also provided the leadership for programs that offer parents a portfolio of choices that support career and college readiness. UCS high schools also have a wide array of Advanced Placement, career and technical education programs, and opportunities in the fine and performing arts. The district’s Advanced Placement programs have been honored by the College Board for the increase in student participation and success. Specialty programs available to secondary students include the UAIS, the Utica Center for Science and Industry, the Utica Center for Mathematics, Science and Technology, and the Manufacturing, Automation and Design Engineering (MADE) academy.  In addition to comprehensive elementary programs, parents also have options for a K-6 Montessori program. Programs are enhanced by such community partnerships as a public-private consortium dedicated to STEM education known as Velocity Jr. and a virtual library card.

Dr. Johns has been named a Tech Savvy Superintendent of the Year by eSchool News. She has also received the People’s Choice Award from Leadership Macomb as Macomb Superintendent of the Year and was named one of the 100 Most Influential Women in Michigan by Crain's Business Detroit. She has been inducted into the Macomb Hall of Fame.

Prior to her current role as Superintendent of Utica Community Schools, Dr. Johns served as Deputy Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction in the Baltimore County Public Schools (MD).  She was Assistant Superintendent in the Pasadena Unified School District (CA) and served as an elementary principal in Prince George’s County Public Schools (MD).

Dr. Johns holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh, a master’s degree from Johns Hopkins University, and both a Master of Education degree and Doctor of Education degree in Educational Administration from Harvard University, Urban Superintendents Program.