Introducing Mr. Ronald Garcia

May 7, 2024


Earlier tonight the board of Tulsa Classical Academy conducted a Special Meeting and voted unanimously to hire Mr. Ronald Garcia to serve as the new Head of School of Tulsa Classical Academy. Dr. Jones will continue to serve as the Acting Head of School through the remainder of this academic year and Mr. Garcia will start this summer.


Mr. Garcia is currently the Head of School at Naples Classical Academy in Naples, Florida. Naples Classical Academy is a Hillsdale Member School that opened in 2021. It has 1,000 students K-12. There, Mr. Garcia inherited a school with cultural, pedagogical, and curriculum issues and was able to assemble mission-driven faculty and staff, unite them in the mission, and turn the school around.


Mr. Garcia started his teaching career in Glendale, Arizona at Great Hearts, the most prominent and successful network of classical charter schools in the nation. There he taught second grade for two years before moving to Great Hearts Cicero Preparatory Academy where he served as Dean of Students and taught Ancient and Medieval History. After four years he was given the opportunity to become the Assistant Head of School at a private classical liberal arts school in Ave Maria, Florida. Years later, he joined the administrative staff at Naples Classical Academy and fell in love with the Hillsdale K-12 approach to classical liberal arts education. He and his wife, Nicole, have three children and a baby on the way. They are looking forward to joining our community and making Tulsa Classical Academy and Tulsa their home.


In addition to garnering the enthusiastic support of the board, Mr. Garcia has earned the coveted endorsement of the Hillsdale K-12 Education Office:


“We believe Mr. Garcia to be a good fit for leadership at TCA. He has capably managed another public charter school in the Hillsdale network, reforming its culture and pedagogy, clearly committed to the academic program and recommendations of the K-12 Education Office. When considering Mr. Garcia’s candidacy, we look to several of the most capable principles from our network who model a rare combination of education, experience, personality, and aptitude that best equips someone to establish and champion a classical school.” Hillsdale K-12 Education Office


Over the last six months, the Head of School Search Advisory Committee undertook a comprehensive international search process. The committee, comprised of board members, parents, and teachers, received thirty-eight applications and conducted fifteen first-round interviews before inviting six candidates to participate in the second-round interview process. Five of the six candidates invited to participate did so. Second-round interviews required candidates to complete a 1-hour personality assessment, conduct a 1-hour in-person interview with a small (non-quorum) group of board members, teach a 20-minute class on any topic of their choosing, and, finally, sit for a comprehensive formal interview with the search advisory committee. After much deliberation, the committee then shortlisted three finalists who were subjected to further evaluation by our partners at the Hillsdale K-12 Education Office. The Hillsdale process demands much from candidates and is extremely rigorous. Very few candidates receive the Hillsdale K-12 Education Office’s coveted endorsement.


The Board wholeheartedly believes that Mr. Garcia is the right Head of School to lead Tulsa Classical Academy into the future.




Board of Directors

Michael Bates

Andrea Hogue

Julie James

Adam Jones

Molly Mooberry

Nathan Phelps

Jon Wielenga


Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What was the Hillsdale College K-12 Education Office’s role in this hiring process?

A: Tulsa Classical Academy is an independent school and thus we are free to hire whomever we wish to hire. However, we appreciate the guidance and support of the Hillsdale K-12 Education Office. They have worked with hundreds of school leaders and have a sense of what kind of candidate is the most well-equipped to lead strong schools. Therefore, we consulted with the Hillsdale K-12 Education Office and sought their endorsement of Mr. Garcia prior to extending an offer of employment.


Q: How does the Hillsdale College K-12 Education Office support our school?

A: Tulsa Classical Academy is one of 23 Hillsdale College Member Schools in the country. Hillsdale provides its Member Schools with the K-12 Program Guide, an excellent and thoughtfully designed K-12 course of study in the liberal arts and sciences designed as a collaborative effort between teachers, Hillsdale College faculty, and the Hillsdale K-12 Education Office. The K-12 Program Guide provides a scope of the topics to be taught, a sequence in which to teach them, and a complement of vetted and reviewed books, primary sources, and other resources for teachers and students that accompany the scope and sequence.

In addition, the Hillsdale K-12 Education Office serves as an advisor to our school leadership, faculty, and board. This advice comes in the form of onsite training and classroom observations, conferences on Hillsdale’s campus, focus groups, and ongoing guidance and professional development – all provided free of charge. Tulsa Classical Academy is committed to excellence as we are guided by Hillsdale’s best practices in school leadership, curriculum, classroom instruction, school culture, and board governance.

Q: What will happen to Dr. Jones and Mrs. Randall?


A: The board is extremely grateful to Dr. Jones and Mrs. Randall, but it would be inappropriate for the board to speculate about or make staffing decisions on behalf of the Head of School. Therefore, Mr. Garcia will immediately begin working with the faculty and staff to get to know them and assess staffing needs for the next academic year.


Q: Did the board consider Dr. Jones for the position?


A: We committed to maintaining the confidentiality of the candidates throughout the process and that will not change. While we have revealed the selected candidate, we will continue to maintain the confidentiality of others who participate in the process.


Q: How has the Head of School hiring process evolved?


A: As a functioning school, we attracted significantly more interest in the position. The search was also much more traditional—we had a relatively well-defined timeline—and that helped keep candidates engaged. We also had the pleasure of including teachers and parents in this search process.