Dr. Bruce Gearing, Leander Independent School District’s superintendent as of Sept. 3, holds many titles — world educator, wind-surfer, musician, community member, father, husband, future-thinker and outdoor enthusiast, among many others.
Gearing hails from South Africa, and proclaims that though he has a certain title, he is just a regular person.
“I’m just a regular person who has the same failings as everybody else, who has the same struggles as everybody else, and I choose to be grateful for the opportunities and experiences that I’ve had,” Gearing said. “I choose to live today and choose not to worry too much about what’s happened before. I’m a future-thinker, so I do think a lot about the future, but it’s in an optimistic way. I’m so optimistic about all the opportunities we have coming forward.”
Prior to beginning his journey at Leander ISD, Gearing has worked as a teacher, an assistant superintendent and superintendent in different parts of the world --- from South Africa to England to Texas.
Gearing said his 10 years of experience working as the superintendent for Dripping Springs Independent School District showed him how to build upon an already excellent school district.
“This is a district of excellence already,” Gearing said. “I’ve discovered that when you have this base of excellence, you can really launch into something a little more and a little different.”
Impressed with the students, the high-quality staff and the systems already in place at Leander ISD, Gearing said he is excited to launch this district of excellence into something really special.
Gearing has a wife and four children, who he credits as his foundation. Everyone in Gearing’s family is a musician, including Gearing who plays piano and bagpipes, which exemplifies the kind of team-work, community and global impact ideals he holds dear.
“I am a strong believer in community,” Gearing said. “I believe that families are the smallest unit of community, and families are so important to our society. We need to be always strengthening families and strengthening our communities, by strengthening the schools our kids attend. Strengthening the needs of those individuals inside those smaller systems is critically important to our success.”
A huge believer in public education’s power to make an impact on a global scale, Gearing said he is excited to work hard on meeting the needs of individuals in the district.
“I believe that we have the opportunity to be a model, certainly in the state of Texas, but nationally, potentially, and even internationally for how you can take meeting the needs of individuals inside large public school systems to scale,” he said. “I feel like we are focused on this school district in this time, but we have a more far-reaching impact on what happens across the state and the nation.”
Gearing said he is grateful to be a part of Leander ISD and is excited for what the future might bring.
“I’m so excited for this opportunity to determine what learning should look like for Leander ISD students, and I truly believe that’s a community conversation that we have to have,” he said. “That may look different in different parts of the community, and we need to address them in different ways. But I’m really excited about the potential that I see and the opportunities we have going forward as a community.”