Education A Washington Roundup

Senate Confirms Head of NCES

By Debra Viadero — November 01, 2005 1 min read

The Senate has confirmed Mark S. Schneider as commissioner for the National Center for Education Statistics.

The statistics agency—which collects, analyzes, and reports data on national academic achievement and other topics for the Department of Education—has been without a permanent head since 1999.

President Bush first nominated Robert Lerner, a Rockville, Md.-based social scientist, for the job in 2003. But Mr. Lerner’s conservative views on social issues drew opposition from gay-rights and civil rights groups, and his nomination failed to advance in the Senate. (“Bush Nominates Commissioner for Statistics Agency,” Aug. 10, 2005.)

A less controversial figure, Mr. Schneider is a former political science professor and department chairman at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Since last year, he has been serving as deputy commissioner of the National Center for Education Research in the department’s Institute of Education Sciences. His term at the helm of the statistics agency ends in June 2009.

The Senate on Oct. 21 approved the nomination by unanimous consent.

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