William Diehl, Executive Director of the Collaborative for Educational Services, to Retire

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William Diehl, Ed.D. will retire on December 31st, 2020, from the post of Executive Director of the Collaborative for Educational Services (CES). Dr. Diehl has been the Executive Director of CES, the largest Massachusetts educational collaborative, since 2014, after joining the agency as Deputy Director in 2010. 

CES directs major direct service initiatives in Early Childhood, Special Education, After School Programs, Assistive Technology, Literacy Development, and the education of vulnerable youth. The agency provides extensive technical assistance, professional development, and educator licensure and certification programs to school districts in Hampshire and Franklin counties, and across the Commonwealth. Among our special areas of expertise are Technology in Education, Social Justice and Equity, English Learner Education, and Special Education. CES also provides districts with access to needed business services including cooperative purchasing, technology joint purchases, and web development.

Under Dr. Diehl’s leadership, CES also manages large-scale statewide projects; providing all the staffing, evaluation, curriculum, educational services and program improvements for the educational programs under the auspices of the Department of Youth Services and similarly, with the Massachusetts Departments of Elementary and Secondary Education’s (DESE’s) Special Education in Institutional Settings programs across the Commonwealth. The agency has also  recently taken on the management of the statewide Massachusetts Migrant Education Program. 

Diehl has served on the Executive Committee of the Massachusetts Organization of Education Collaboratives (MOEC) and has been the Western MA liaison to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. He has represented MOEC on the state’s Safe and Supportive School Commission for six years and has been active with state-level and foundation-supported efforts at transforming secondary education and at creating equitable and socially-just schools and communities.

For over 40 years, Diehl has dedicated his work, talents, and passion to improving education for young people, particularly those who have been underserved, and whose potential has been underrecognized. He holds a Doctorate in Education from Indiana University, and is  licensed as a Massachusetts Superintendent. His work prior to CES encompasses positions as the Executive Director for Diploma Plus, Inc., a model for alternative small schools for youth who have been failed by the traditional education system; as a Senior Program Manager at Commonwealth Corporation, as Education Cluster Lead for their Center for Youth Development and Education; as the Senior Specialist at the Michigan Partnership for New Education, Michigan State University; as a faculty member in literacy education and developmental studies;  and as a secondary school reading and English teacher. The common theme in his career and his motivating passion has been addressing the persistent gaps in access, opportunities, and outcomes between students of privilege and students who are traditionally underserved. 

At the Collaborative for Educational Services, his leadership has placed at the forefront of the agency’s mission and work important work in  social justice and equity in education, and in how to move educators and education forward from systems of institutional racism, colonialism, and unconscious bias. He has never lost sight of the critical importance of education, and efforts to reduce or eliminate barriers that vulnerable children, youth and families face in accessing education. Over the past ten years, he has worked tirelessly to support, promote and advocate for excellence in education in Western Massachusetts, across the Commonwealth, and beyond.  

Said Diehl, “I am looking forward to spending more time with my beloved wife, family and friends, to pursuing avocations and hobbies that have been put on hold too long, and to continuing to grow in my commitments to education, social justice, and anti-racism work. I have dedicated over 40 years to various roles in education, each one with progressive responsibility and each focused on improving access, opportunity and outcomes for all children, youth and families. 

“At CES, I’ve worked with a talented, innovative, passionate staff and with many partners.Together, we have worked hard to develop a culture of compassion and care, establish and embrace principles of social justice and equity as foundational to our agency, and develop a set of values for both our internal and external work. We have broadened and deepened our commitment to our statewide work with state agencies, with many positive outcomes for some of the state’s children and youth whose great potential has historically been underserved and underrecognized. We’ve also had a priority to strengthen and grow our relationships with the member and non-member districts with whom we work closely. Our goal has been to improve education and bring transformational change.

“I have confidence CES will continue to lead with compassion and the capacity to thrive, adapt and learn in challenging times. Our shared humanity and ability to be present for each other will help us to navigate the opportunities ahead, to inspire, support and educate children, youth and adults, and to help others to do the same.”

The agency, under the direction of the CES Board of Directors, will launch an executive search process for a new Executive Director at the beginning of November. During the January – June 2021 timeframe, the CES Deputy Director Karen Reuter will act as Interim Executive Director.  

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