WASHINGTON, Sept. 6, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Seven education leaders from around the country—including a big-city school superintendent, a state education commissioner, a high school teacher, a state school board member and a university professor—have been appointed to the National Assessment Governing Board to serve four-year terms, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced today. Two of the appointees—current Board members Lou Fabrizio of North Carolina and Susan Pimentel of New Hampshire—were reappointed for a second term. Terms for all members officially begin October 1, 2011, and are slated to end on September 30, 2015.
The appointees will help set policy for the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), also known as The Nation's Report Card. NAEP makes objective information on student performance available to policymakers and the public at the national, state and local levels. NAEP has served an important role in evaluating the condition and progress of American education since 1969.
"These seven leaders play critical roles in informing the public about where we are in education as a nation," said Secretary Duncan. "Together, their diverse education experience and leadership will be a valuable resource in identifying where we need dramatic improvement and how we can better provide our children with a 21st century education."
In overseeing The Nation's Report Card, the 26-member Governing Board—a group of governors, state legislators, local and state school officials, educators and researchers, business representatives and members of the general public—determines subjects and content to be tested, sets the achievement levels for reporting scores, and releases the results to the public.
The slate of five newcomers include the superintendent of Baltimore City Public Schools, Kentucky's commissioner of education, an Indiana mathematics high school teacher, the chairman of the Tennessee State Board of Education, and a research professor in Oregon. Reappointed members Pimentel and Fabrizio serve, respectively, as an education consultant and a data, research and federal policy director for the North Carolina Department of Education.
The new Board members and the categories they represent include:
- Andres Alonso (Baltimore; local school superintendent): Chief Executive Officer of Baltimore City Public Schools. Since 2007, Alonso has implemented many successful initiatives in Maryland's largest school district, such as enlarging the role of family and communities in school operations, closing low-performing schools, giving more autonomy to school principals, and improving student performance with a narrowing of achievement gaps among some subgroups of students. He previously served as deputy chancellor for the New York City Department of Education, where he was involved with developing school accountability.
- Terry Holliday (Lexington, Ky.; chief state school officer): Commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Education. Holliday was selected as the state's fifth education commissioner in 2009. He previously served as superintendent of the 20,000-student Iredell-Statesville school district, which garnered him the 2009 North Carolina Superintendent of the Year Award and the 2008 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, created by Congress in 1987 to recognize organizations with long-term improvement in quality and productivity.
- Dale Nowlin (Columbus, Ind.; 12th-grade teacher): Teacher at Columbus North High School. A 35-year veteran in science and mathematics, Nowlin has taught in his home state since 1979 and also serves as an adjunct faculty member at Indiana University – Bloomington. Nowlin has won numerous awards and grants over the years, including the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science and Mathematics Teaching and the Lilly Endowment Teacher Creativity Grant.
- B. Fielding Rolston (Kingsport, Tenn.; state school board member): Chairman of the Tennessee State Board of Education. Since 1996, Rolston has served on the state board of education, which is the governing and policy-making body for the Tennessee system of public elementary and secondary education. With an educational and professional background in engineering, Rolston also has served as board chairman for several other organizations in the field of higher education, health and industry, including the Eastman Credit Union Board of Directors.
- Cary Sneider (Portland, Ore.; curriculum specialist): Associate Research Professor at Portland State University. Since 2007, Sneider has taught courses on research methodology for his university's Center for Education and served as a consultant to various groups, including Achieve, Inc., and the National Research Council. Sneider served on the development team for the Governing Board's 2009 NAEP Science Framework and as the planning committee co-chair for the Board's 2014 NAEP Technology and Engineering Literacy Framework. Previously, he was vice president for educator programs at the Museum of Science in Boston.
The continuing Board members and the categories they represent include:
- Lou Fabrizio (Raleigh, N.C.; testing and measurement expert): Data, Research and Federal Policy Director for the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. Fabrizio serves as the department's liaison with the U.S. Department of Education on issues related to standards, assessments and accountability. His work in North Carolina has involved policy development and communications related to the state's ABCs Accountability Program, the statewide testing program, and the state's accountability and assessment plans for No Child Left Behind. A Governing Board member since 2007, he chairs the Board's committee on standards, design and methodology.
- Susan Pimentel (Hanover, N.H.; curriculum specialist): Educational Consultant. Pimentel is an education analyst and standards and curriculum specialist whose focus for three decades has been helping communities, districts and states work together to advance education reform and champion tools for increasing academic rigor. Pimentel was also a lead writer on English Language Arts and Literacy standards for the Common Core State Standards Initiative. A Governing Board member since 2007, she sits on the Board's assessment development committee and nominations committee.
The members take office as the Governing Board is expanding its role in several key areas. The Board plans to issue a report in 2012 on the results of a comprehensive research program it has overseen on how NAEP can be used as an indicator of 12th-grade academic preparedness for college and job training. The Board also has created an ad hoc committee on NAEP parent engagement, with a focus on conveying the urgency of closing achievement gaps and improving student performance.
"These seven men and women have served education in very different ways, yet they all equally bring vast knowledge, dedication, and insight to this important role," said Governing Board Chairman David P. Driscoll. "With the duty of maintaining NAEP as the gold standard of measuring student achievement nationwide and the Board's initiatives in 12th-grade preparedness and parent engagement, our new members can help us expand our horizons in a meaningful way."
The National Assessment Governing Board is an independent, bipartisan board whose members include governors, state legislators, local and state school officials, educators, business representatives, and members of the general public. Congress created the 26-member Governing Board in 1988 to oversee and set policy for NAEP.
The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) is the only nationally representative, continuing evaluation of the condition of education in the United States. It has served as a national yardstick of student achievement since 1969. Through The Nation's Report Card, NAEP informs the public about what America's students know and can do in various subject areas, and compares achievement between states, large urban districts, and various student demographic groups.
SOURCE National Assessment Governing Board