McKINNEY — McKinney ISD has named Paula Kent as the district’s new director of curriculum and instruction. The Board of Trustees approved the recommendation at their regular meeting recently.

The position was vacated in January when former Director of Curriculum and Instruction Jennifer Wilhelm left to pursue an opportunity with another district.

Paula Kent

Paula Kent

“Paula Kent is an exceptional leader,” said MISD Assistant Superintendent of Student Services Dr. Melinda DeFelice. “She has impressed us at every step since she came to McKinney ISD, and we are excited for her to take on this new role as director of curriculum and instruction. We are confident that she will do an outstanding job in this critical position.”

Kent is a 24-year veteran of public education. She started her career in Mount Pleasant as a high school biology teacher and eventually made her way to MISD in 2011 to serve as the lead Pre-AP Biology teacher at McKinney North High School. By 2014, she had become an assistant principal on that campus, and by 2015 was the lead assistant principal. Now, she moves into yet another leadership position.

“I am extremely honored and excited about taking on the role of director of curriculum and instruction,” said Kent. “Since coming to the district, I have been able to serve as a classroom teacher, instructional coach and as an assistant principal. I have enjoyed each role, and it has been a pleasure to serve such a forward thinking district that truly cares for every one of its students. 

“I look forward to playing a vital role in ensuring that MISD has a guaranteed and viable curriculum for all courses offered,” she said. “Additionally, I want to provide the support needed to ensure high levels of research-based instruction in every MISD classroom. MISD is blessed with a tremendously talented leadership team, and I am humbled to join their ranks.”

Kent holds a Bachelor of Science in Broad-field Science from East Texas State University and a Master of Science in Biology and Natural Sciences from Stephen F. Austin University. She is currently enrolled in the doctoral program for educational leadership at the University of North Texas.

For additional information on McKinney ISD, contact Shane Mauldin, MISD Communications Coordinator, at 469-302-4007 or


About McKinney ISD

One of the fastest growing school districts in Texas, the McKinney Independent School District currently enrolls more than 24,750 students in 20 elementary schools, five middle schools, three high schools, four alternative schools and one early childhood education school. The mission of McKinney ISD, the champion for progressive learning throughout the diverse McKinney community, is to inspire and equip all students to explore, develop and express their unique potential as innovators, critical thinkers and collaborators through challenging, engaging and diverse learning experiences in vital partnership with the community. Visit the district's website at