Philadelphia School Reform Commission down to two members as Archie and Irizarry resign

The head of the School Reform Commission in Philadelphia has resigned along with member Johnny Irizarry.

Robert Archie resigned after Newsworks and partner The Public School Notebook reported that former Superintendent Arlene Ackerman said she was threatened during discussions to select a company to run the Martin Luther High School. Archie and the SRC also drew criticism for renewing Ackerman’s contract earlier this year only to buy it out this summer for $900,000.

Mayor Michael Nutter says he did not force Archie to quit.

“The chairman served the School Reform Commission well and I appreciate his service, it was a personal decision that he made we had some conversation about it I’m appreciative of his work at the SRC,” said Nutter.

Archie declined to comment.

Nutter characterized Archie’s work this way: “I think the chairman was always concerned about the children of the city of Philadelphia and focused on their education and did his best to maintain that focus on improving test scores, which has happened over the past few years and graduation rates and the implementing many of the elements of 2014.”

The mayor says he will work quickly to find Archie’s replacement.

A previous vacancy and the new departures leave only two of five seats on the SRC filled.

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