Delaware Governor Jack Markell didn’t have to look long for his replacement as Lillian Lowery, the Secretary of Education. His choice has a first hand knowledge of state education issues.
Mark Murphy, now the executive director of Vision 2015 is Markell’s choice. He praised Murphy as some who is “able to hit the ground running, needs to understand our education improvement efforts, and needs first-hand experience working as teacher and school leader,” Markell said in a statement.
Vision 2015 was set up as an overall education reform effort for Delaware that began in 2007. It was put together by a coalition of education, civic, business and government leaders before the Obama administration put out its Race to the Top agenda. That gave Delaware over $119 million for school improvements over the next four years.
Murphy in his capacity as head of that project worked with a coalition of 26 school districts. Our video partner, Content Delaware profiled the Vision Network program on its website.
Markell had wanted to find a nominee to replace Lowery who is leaving for a similar position in Maryland before the current legislative session ends in June.
Murphy has been a teacher and assistant principal at schools in Maryland. Before heading up the Vision Network project he was Executive Director of Leadership Development at New Leaders for New Schools, a national non-profit. His group worked with groups to improve standards and train teachers in 10 districts across the country.
Murphy talked about Delaware schools and the job he is taking on. “Delaware has made remarkable progress, putting forward a detailed agenda and implementing innovative ideas to make sure more students graduate ready to succeed in work or college. If confirmed by the Senate, I look forward to helping move each of these efforts forward”, he said in a statement.
Lowery also released a statement, ““I have had the good fortune to work with Mark and I firmly believe he has the intellect, energy, compassion and leadership skills to lead this Department and our state-wide efforts to improve Delaware’s schools.”