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New Leadership at Council Begins

  • Michael O’Neill  Michael O’Neill, a member of the Boston School Committee for Boston Public Schools, takes the reins as chair of the Council of the Great City Schools’ Board of Directors for a one-year term, effective July 1. 

    He advances from chair-elect to lead the 152-member Board of Directors, the coalition’s main policymaking body, comprised of the superintendent and a school board member from each of the coalition’s 76-member big-city school districts. O’Neill succeeds Chief Executive Officer Eric Gordon of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, who will assume the position of immediate past chair.

    O’Neill, a graduate of Boston Public Schools and a member of the Boston School Committee since 2008, said he is honored to hold the new post.   

    Barbara Jenkins  “As a graduate of a Great City School system, I know the value of an excellent public education and am committed, now more than ever, to make that possibility a reality for all of our students,” said O’Neill in a statement to the Boston Globe. “The work is hard and the challenges are high, but the drive and commitment that is shared with all who do this work is unflagging.”  

    Moving up from the secretary-treasurer post is Barbara Jenkins, superintendent of the Orange County Public Schools in Orlando, Fla., who now becomes the Council’s chair-elect. Ashley Paz

    Ashley Paz, school board member of Texas’ Fort Worth Independent School District, will round out the Council’s 2019-20 leadership team as secretary-treasurer.

    “As the nation’s urban public schools rise to meet the challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Council’s board is in capable hands with O’Neill and his leadership team,” says Council Executive Director Michael Casserly.