Jane Dundes Smith, 74, passed away on May 27, 2019, in Yucaipa. Jane was born July 19, 1946, in Glendale.
She grew up in La Crescenta where she met her husband, Steve. Jane graduated from La Crescenta High School and she later graduated from UC Davis, earning a bachelor’s in English and history. She received her master’s in education with an emphasis on reading instruction.
Jane began her love for education with her first teaching position at the age of 21, in Vallejo Unified School District as a ninth-grade English teacher. She was married the same year. After three years of teaching, Jane had to take a leave of absence from her classroom when she became pregnant. The Smith family moved to Rialto with their two daughters, and in 1979, Jane accepted a position at Alder Junior High in the Fontana Unified School District as a reading teacher.
Jane moved from the classroom to a program specialist, assistant principal, director of staff development, and an assistant superintendent of instruction in the Fontana Unified School District. Jane served in the San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools office from August of 1993 to July of 1999 as the Deputy Superintendent of Instruction. Jane supported the educational programs in the largest county in the United States.
From 1999 to 2006 Jane worked for The Pullium Group, ETS Pullium, led by the former County Superintendent of Schools, Barry Pullium. In her new role she designed products and services to support low performing schools. She had nationwide influence in her work. In 2006, Jane became an independent consultant and worked with districts all over the country, always ready to learn and have fun.
In June of 2006, she would return to Fontana Unified as the Superintendent of Schools. Jane retired from Fontana in 2008 and that same year she was elected to the Board of Education in the Yucaipa-Calimesa School District. She served as board president in 2015 and has served on the Nominating Committee for California School Boards Association (2014), CSBA Delegate Assembly for six years, SANDABS for seven years and was elected president of the San Bernardino County School Boards Association by her peers last year.
She is deserving of gratitude for all she did for education and for her amazing support to students, teachers, administrators and fellow board members. She was respected and loved.
Jane is survived by her husband of 50 years, Steve Smith; her daughters Tina Teodorescu and her husband Chris and Elizabeth LeRoy and her husband David; grandchildren Catie and Alex Teodorescu, Madison and Matthew Leroy; brother John Dundes and sister Patricia Niles.
Services were held Thursday, June 6, at 10 a.m. at San Bernardino First Presbyterian Church, located at 1900 N. “D” Street in San Bernardino. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Intern Ministry of the First Presbyterian Church and the Rotary Club of Yucaipa.