Earlier today DC Public Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson announced that she will step down from her post in the fall. As component of education reform in the District, the Council instilled in the Mayor and Chancellor the responsibility for operating and improving DC Public Schools. The DC State Board of Education approves educational policies, in cooperation with the Superintendent, for educational standards for DCPS and the District’s robust public charter school sector.
Chancellor Henderson has demonstrated the power of transformational leadership in her work to improve DC Public Schools for students across all eight wards. Her collaboration with the Board of Education has advanced our shared vision for a public school system that supports students, teachers, families, and communities.
During our overlapping tenure together serving the students and families of the District, the Board of Education engaged DCPS frequently to improve educational opportunities and outcomes for our students. We worked closely with DCPS when the Board approved the Next Generation Science Standards to ensure all students receive high-quality, hands-on science education. I’m also proud that the Board led the District’s efforts to approve the Chancellor’s priority of providing a path for competency-based education for high school students through our Credit Flexibility Task Force. The Board also operated in concert with DCPS and other education stakeholders across the District to approve the biggest overhaul of health education standards in memory.
I look forward to working with Mayor Bowser during the search for and transition to our next Chancellor to ensure that DCPS’s critical work continues and accelerates. It is our responsibility to provide all District students a high-quality education that prepares them for life after high school, regardless of neighborhood, race, socioeconomic status, disability, or any other real or perceived disadvantage or circumstance. We owe it to our students and to the next generation of Washingtonians to support all students and ensure equity of access and improve students’ educational experiences and outcomes.