Education A State Capitals Roundup

As Board Awaits Its New Majority, Kan. Chief Resigns

By Jessica L. Tonn — December 05, 2006 1 min read

Kansas Commissioner of Education Bob Corkins resigned late last month amid speculation that he would have been fired by moderates who will reclaim a majority on the 10-person state board of education in January.

Mr. Corkins was hired by the current, conservative-majority board last year. Moderate members, both Republicans and Democrats, opposed his appointment because he had never worked as a school administrator or teacher.

As commissioner, he further angered moderates by promoting charter schools and supporting state science standards containing language critical of the theory of evolution.

In his Nov. 22 resignation letter, Mr. Corkins wrote that “many substantial decisions were required during my term and I have not had a moment’s regret over any.” His resignation was effective at the close of business that day.

The board appointed Deputy Commissioner Dale Dennis to serve as acting schools chief while a search is conducted. Mr. Dennis also served as acting commissioner last year after the retirement of Mr. Corkins’ predecessor, Andy Tompkins.

A version of this article appeared in the December 06, 2006 edition of Education Week