Education A National Roundup

Interim S.F. Chief Selected to Take Over Next Spring

By Catherine Gewertz — November 15, 2005 1 min read

Gwen Chan, the San Francisco school system’s deputy superintendent, will become its interim leader in the spring, replacing retiring Superintendent Arlene Ackerman.

Ms. Chan, 60, will serve as the superintendent through at least June 2007, according to the San Francisco Chronicle, which said the district plans to conduct a national search during the 2006-07 school year. She has worked as a teacher and administrator in the 60,000-student district for 38 years.

Ms. Ackerman announced in September that she plans to retire after five years in the district. Her retirement date is June 30, but she will use vacation and sick days to depart in the spring. She plans to join the faculty of Teachers College, Columbia University, in New York City.

Superintendent Ackerman, whose past few years have been marked by repeated clashes with the school board, told the Chronicle that Ms. Chan, who will be the district’s first Chinese-American superintendent, was a good choice. “She’s not like me—she doesn’t have a big mouth,” Ms. Ackerman said. “She’s very shy, but she has a mind of her own.”

A version of this article appeared in the November 02, 2005 edition of Education Week