Iowa Gov. Branstad Picks Deputy Director Wise as New State K-12 Chief

By Andrew Ujifusa — July 01, 2015 1 min read
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Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad has picked Iowa deputy education director Ryan Wise to be the next state chief, replacing Brad Buck. Wise’s appointment to the top K-12 post in the Hawkeye state is subject to confirmation by the state senate.

If he’s confirmed, Wise will take over for Buck, who is leaving his position after a little less than two years to take over as superintendent of the Cedar Rapids district in the state. Buck took over as the state chief in 2013 for Jason Glass, who also left the position to take a superintendent’s job, this time in Eagle County, Colorado.

According to his biography, Wise has had a broad portfolio at the Iowa department. In addition to overseeing policy and communications work, he’s been the department’s liaison to the state school board, and has led the state’s Learning Online platform and Teacher Leadership and Compensation System. The latter distributes additional pay to teachers deemed more effective, and also attempts to provide teachers with more career leadership opportunities. Eventually, this system is slated to grow to $150 million in annual state funding.

The bio also states that he “plays a key role in the development of the Department’s strategic initiatives.”

Wise began his education career as a high school history teacher in Mississippi and Nebraska.

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