Alabama State Schools Chief Announces Resignation

By Daarel Burnette II — March 01, 2016 1 min read
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Alabama’s state schools chief, Tommy Bice, announced his resignation Tuesday, according to the Associated Press. Bice said he decided his work was complete and that he is leaving to work for the Mike and Gillian Goodrich Foundation as its education director later this spring. His last day will be on the job will be March 31.

Bice was appointed by the state’s board of education in 2011 and has led the state in increasing its graduation rate and adopting a strategic plan.

He also opposed legislators’ attempts to toss the state’s common core standards and allow parents to use tax credits to send their children to private schools. Both of those efforts have so far failed at the statehouse.

During last year’s contentious battle over allowing charter schools into the state, Bice argued that the state should leave it up to local districts to decide whether to allow for their expansion. Until last year, the state was one of the few in the country without charter schools.

“When you’re a proponent of innovation and change and rigor and doing what’s right for kids that might not feel politically correct, you expect to have challenges to that,” he said during a press conference Tuesday.

Alabama’s state board of education will meet next week to appoint an interim superintendent.

State superintendents and their departments will be under increased pressure in the coming years to create new teacher and school accountability plans under the Every Student Succeeds Act which was signed in December by President Barack Obama.

A version of this news article first appeared in the State EdWatch blog.