Gunn Marie Hansen, Ph.D.

Biography, June 2018

Gunn Marie Hansen, Ph.D., has been an educator for nearly 29 years.  She is currently serving as Superintendent in the Orange Unified School District, previous to being Deputy Superintendent and before that Assistant Superintendent for Educational Services.

She earned her B.S. in Psychology and B.A. in International Relations/Political Science from Tulane University.  Both her Masters of Science in Education and Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Policy are from the University of Southern California.

During Dr. Hansen’s career in education, she has served as an elementary and secondary teacher, mentor teacher, assistant principal and principal at elementary and middle school.  She has had district level responsibilities spanning grades PreK – 12.    As an assistant director and director of PreK-12 Instructional Services, she implemented many educational reforms to improve student achievement.  Before coming to Orange Unified, she was associate superintendent of secondary schools in a large urban district.  Her experience includes serving students of diverse populations and socioeconomic levels in both urban and suburban settings.

She has developed a reputation for focusing on student learning and achievement. Gunn Marie’s duties have included curricular/instructional innovations, organizational development, expanding the instructional leadership of principals, transitioning to the Common Core State Standards, implementation of technology integration programs, development of interventions and support programs for special populations, maximizing resources, and strategic planning.    Dr. Hansen is committed to excellence in education and believes that all students should be provided the highest quality of education.

Gunn Marie Hansen , Ph.D.

Gunn Marie Hansen , Ph.D.

Superintendent of Schools
School: 714-628-4487
School Fax: 714-628-4041


Message from the Superintendent of Schools

April 2018

Overview of Educational Technology Department Programs

Orange Unified School District has a cutting edge Educational Technology Department that offers professional development programs to increase access to and promote purposeful integration of technology in classrooms across the district. The team support teachers as they move through their initial emerging use of technology to fully integrated implementation in a student-driven classroom. All of our programs meet teachers where they are at in this continuum to support their further development.

                In 2013, the iTeach program began. This program provides classroom teachers with iPads to enhance classroom instruction and student learning. The purpose of this program is to facilitate and inspire student learning and creativity, design & develop digital age learning experiences and assessments, model digital age work and learning, and engage in professional growth and leadership This process is facilitated by an instructional coach who works with the teacher each week for approximately 12 weeks as the teacher completes tasks to create a blended learning environment.

                The eBadge program began in 2014 to provide teachers with one device that allowed them to explore and learn. Over three years, teachers had the opportunity to explore Chromebooks, HP Streams, and mini iPads. This program required all teachers to demonstrate fluency with the device by completing requirements focused on classroom integration and digital work.

                That same year, iLearn began to increase classroom access to technology. This program provides a loaner cart to teacher teams to be used daily in the classroom. The devices allow teachers the opportunity to create 21st century, blended learning environments where students will develop technology skills for college and career readiness. Teachers choose their area of interest and guide their own professional development while utilzing the cart.

                In 2015, the 1:1 program kicked off to increase access and integration in our schools. Instructional coaches work with teachers daily at their school sites and in their classroom to build best practices for classroom instruction and to help teachers move along the technology use continuum through personalized professional learning plans. The program continues to expand each year, and next year the team will move to supporting the entire school’s technology initiatives.

                Last year, the iPilot program was introduced to provide teachers the opportunity to receive a variety of instructional technology tools for their classroom use in exchange for providing feedback on lesson integration. This program has allowed our teachers to access coding devices, drones, and various other tools.

                Next year, the technology will introduce the iLead program. This program will allow our teachers to design their professional development through a grant writing process focused on student achievement. The teachers will identify a need, implement a solution, and work through the collaborative cycle of effective instruction with an instructional coach to improve student achievement. As this program continues to grow, we will foster a collaborative culture at school sites and across the district focused on sharing best practices for improving student achievement.

March 5, 2018

Dear OUSD Parents and Community Partners –

The impact of the recent school shooting in Parkland, Florida has reverberated on school campuses throughout the nation, prompting concerns about school safety. 

Many of our students have expressed an intention to participate in a publicized nationwide school walkout for 17 minutes - starting at 10:00 a.m. on March 14 - in response to gun violence and in remembrance of the 17 Florida victims. The nationwide walkout is student-driven and voluntary.  The event is not sponsored by Orange Unified School District nor any of its schools. However, principals, District staff and student leaders are meeting to ensure a peaceful event should students decide to participate.

Orange Unified respects the First Amendment rights of our students to support a cause and express their opinions provided they adhere to District and school guidelines:

  • All activities must remain peaceful
  • Students may not leave campus
  • Students must stay in designated areas and not disrupt the educational environment for other students and staff
  • After 17 minutes, students must return to class when instructed by school staff

To further student safety, individuals who are not on official school business will not be allowed on campus to participate in the walkout. As is our current protocol, all visitors or school volunteers must check in with the school’s front office. Our number one priority at Orange Unified is the safety and well-being of all our students.

OUSD has received legal guidance from the Orange County Department of Education that school districts may provide appropriate time-and-place alternatives to ensure minimal disruption of the instructional process.  Principals from schools that are aware of planned student walkouts will be contacting their parent communities in the coming week to provide information about their campus. We understand how important and impactful this issue is to children and families, and we encourage honest and frank conversations with your children. 

OUSD will be holding an Active Shooter Response Training for Parents  on Tuesday, March 6, from 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. in the gym at Canyon High School, 220 S. Imperial Highway, Anaheim.  Please note, this event features mature content and is not suitable for children.  We encourage parents to attend tomorrow’s presentation where law enforcement representatives will be available to discuss student safety

Thank you for your continued support of our schools and community.


Gunn Marie Hansen, Ph.D.

Superintendent of Schools

Click HERE for a PDF of the Superintendent's official letter.

Leer la carta en Español aqui.


February 15, 2018

Dear OUSD Community:

We are all deeply saddened by yesterday's school shooting tragedy at the Broward County High School. As a collective school community, we mourn for the lives lost and those affected by this tragic event.

Today, you may notice police vehicles on or in the vicinity of your campus. This is not necessary indicative of a problem, but law enforcement agencies serving our schools often plan increased presence on the day after such a devastating incident to show solidarity and commitment to school safety. The Orange Unified School District tremendously values the partnership with our local law enforcement, fire/rescue and first responders.

Rest assured that the District takes school safety seriously and there are strong emergency plans in place at all schools and support sites where our protocols are consistently practiced and refined.  Below are some resources you may wish to use and share if questions come up regarding a national crises and the social emotional impact on students.


We value the hard work of school staff to provide a safe and secure learning environment.  Please do not hesitate to contact District staff for any support!

Kindest regards,
Gunn Marie Hansen, Ph.D.

See the Superintendent's letter by CLICKING HERE.


Additional Resources:

Talking to Children About Violence

Talking to Children About Violence: Infographic

Talking to Children About Violence: Spanish

Managing Strong Emotional Reactions

15 de febrero del 2018

Estimada comunidad del OUSD:

Estamos profundamente entristecidos por el trágico tiroteo escolar ocurrido ayer en la escuela Broward County. Como parte de una comunidad escolar unida, lamentamos la perdida de tantas vidas y nos unimos al sufrimiento de todos los afectados por esta tragedia.

Hoy ustedes notarán algunas patrullas de policía cerca de su escuela. Esto no significa que hay un problema, sino que las agencias protectoras incrementan su presencia en los planteles escolar el día después de una tragedia, para demostrar su solidaridad y compromiso de mantener las escuelas seguras. El Distrito Escolar Unificado de Orange valora enormemente la asociación con las agencias protectoras locales, los bomberos y los rescatistas.

Le aseguramos que el Distrito toma muy en serio la seguridad y tiene un plan de emergencia establecido en todas las escuelas y sitios educativos, el cual practicamos y mejoramos constantemente. Abajo encontrará algunos recursos que puede usar y compartir si tiene preguntas referentes a crisis nacionales y el impacto social y emocional en los estudiantes.


Nosotros valoramos el gran esfuerzo que el personal escolar hace para mantener un ambiente de aprendizaje seguro y protegido. Por favor comuníquese con el personal del Distracto si necesita apoyo.


 Gunn Marie Hansen, PH.D.

Vea la carta oficial de la Superintendente. PRESIONE AQUI

Orange USD Trustees Appoint Gunn Marie Hansen, Ph.D., Superintendent of Schools

Orange, CA – December 8, 2017 -Orange, CA – The Orange Unified School District Board of Trustees is pleased to announce the appointment of Gunn Marie Hansen, Ph.D. as the new Superintendent of Schools.  Dr. Hansen has a rich history with Orange having served as both Deputy and Assistant Superintendent, as well as being the current Interim Superintendent for Orange USD.

Input for the new Superintendent included sessions with all stakeholder groups - administrators, staff, community groups, parents and key city and business partners. Forums were held with the constituents and an online survey was available on the District website.  Utilizing the feedback from the community, Leadership Associates, a premier executive search firm, advertised and conducted an extensive nationwide search for the position.  

The Board of Education worked with Leadership Associates Consultants Dr. Kent Bechler, Dr. Dennis Smith and Dr. Mark Ecker, to conduct the Superintendent Search and develop the candidate profile. The recruitment resulted in 36 candidate requests.  This week the Board of Trustees reviewed the 23 completed applications

The Board of Education realized that they did not need to look far to find their new Superintendent, and appointed Dr. Hansen at their regular meeting on December 7. Based on the stakeholder feedback and leadership profile, it was decided she was the best fit for Orange Unified School District.  Dr. Hansen was selected from an incredibly talented group of candidates. 

Newly Elected Board President, Dr. Alexia Deligianni-Brydges stated, ”Dr. Hansen’s leadership and commitment is tried and true. Over the past several months as the Interim Superintendent she has led the district through the opening of schools, developed a collaborative team, supported the implementation of the Facilities Bond, managed the crisis of the Canyon 2 Fire with school closures and evacuations and consistently kept the focus on student learning.  

Her past leadership as the Deputy Superintendent has resulted in the attainment of 24 California Gold Ribbon School Awards, expansion of 13 Career Technical Education pathways, innovative STEAM programs and collaborative relationships with teachers and staff resulting in numerous awards for Orange USD Schools. I look forward to working with her to promote our schools with top quality education preparing students for university, technical trades and well paid careers in the 21st Century.”

Former Board President, Rick Ledesma said, “With a proven track record of success, Dr. Hansen is an incredible asset to the District as we head into the future. She has been recognized for her excellent communication skills, ethical leadership and ability to think outside the box. As an innovator, she established the first Mandarin Immersion School in Orange County resulting in increased enrollment. 

Recently, her leadership team delivered a positive audit report to continue the stellar OUSD fiscal reputation. Dr. Hansen is a highly regarded visionary who will take OUSD to the next level. She is dedicated to the Orange community, committed long-term, and the Board of Education has great confidence in her abilities”

Dr. Hansen said, “It is a distinct honor to be selected by the OUSD Trustees as the new Superintendent.  I am excited to get to work with our team to accelerate student achievement, develop innovative opportunities for learning, and guide the implementation of the Facilities Bond.  I look forward to collaborating with our teachers, staff, students and parents to elevate the district to the next level of success”

Dr. Hansen earned her Masters and Doctorate Degree from the University of Southern California and two bachelors degrees from Tulane University.  She has been an elementary and high school teacher, mentor teacher, assistant principal, principal, curriculum director, university professor and associate, deputy and interim Superintendent.

Orange Unified School District Mission Statement

The Orange Unified School District, being committed to planning for continual improvement, will offer a learning environment of excellence, with high expectations, to provide each student with the opportunity to be able to compete in the global economy.

Top Ten Core Values

  1. That all students will learn.
  2. That all available resources will be utilized to ensure student success.
  3. That everyone needs to model servant leadership.
  4. That creating a shared vision will empower others.
  5. That communicating our shared vision requires honesty and consistency.
  6. That all people should be treated with respect and dignity.
  7. That we demonstrate trustworthiness by all we say and do.
  8. That we need to listen empathically and respectfully to understand the message beyond the words.
  9. That everyone is our customer and, therefore, we will always follow-up and follow-through.
  10. That what’s best for our students comes first and foremost.