DALLAS - The magnitude of Dallas Superintendent Christy Perry's career shift - jumping from leading Dallas schools to the second largest school district in the state - hasn't quite sunk in yet. "It's just totally a different scale," she said Thursday, two days after the Salem-Keizer School District named her its next superintendent. Dallas serves approximately 3,000 students, while Salem-Keizer has more than 40,000. Moving from one to the other will be a big transition, but one Perry said she is ready for. Perry said Salem-Keizer has a strong leadership team in place to help her get started and, perhaps even more important, her experience as superintendent in Dallas has prepared her well. "I'm confident I know what I need to be able to lead," she said. That doesn't mean leaving Dallas, where she's spent 16 years -- eight as the superintendent -- will be easy. "In some ways, it's heartbreaking, but I don't question that I'm doing exactly what I need to do next," Perry said. The Dallas School Board also is considering its next steps. Board Chairman Matt Posey said the board will schedule a special meeting next week to begin planning to replace Perry. He said that could mean launching a search for a permanent replacement or appointing an interim superintendent. Posey said the board wishes Perry well in her move to the Salem-Keizer position. "I think our board is clearly sad she's leaving, but we are excited for her opportunity, too," Posey said. To read more about Perry taking the Salem-Keizer post and what is next for the Dallas School District, see the May 21 edition of the Itemizer-Observer.