Two new appointees to watch

Two interim school leaders took office as we began the new year.

President Obama appointed John King acting U.S. Secretary of Education in the wake of Arne Duncan’s resignation. King served as state commissioner of the New York schools. He has a Ph.D. in education and a law degree. However, King has not endeared himself to New York state’s teachers’ unions. He pushed reform on them, including forcing into place a new accountability system and he tried to collect student data for use by software marketers.  The state’s courts have already stepped in. Congress will have to approve his appointment if he is to remain in the job after Obama leaves office.

As a search firm begins to seek a new Ohio Superintendent of Public Instruction, Lonny Rivera steps into the interim role. Rivera served as a deputy state superintendent, as superintendent of the nearby Oregon City Schools, a principal in Toledo, and as chief of staff for the Toledo Public Schools. Rivera temporarily succeeds Richard Ross, who resigned after revelations of state cheating on charter school success reports. He has said he will not seek permanent appointment.