Jason Botel, an assistant deputy assistant secretary for innovation and improvement at the U.S. Department of Education, and one of the Trump team’s first education staffers, will leave the department next month.
That’s according to a goodbye email Botel sent to department employees Wednesday. Botel’s departure was first reported by Politico.
Botel was initially responsible for helping to oversee the department’s implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act. The agency announced yesterday that it had now approved plans for all 50 states plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.
Frank Brogan, the assistant secretary of elementary and secondary education, who was confirmed by the Senate earlier this year, is now the department’s ESSA point man.
Botel clashed with U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., the chairman of the education committee, over implementation of the law, with Alexander going as far as to say publicly that Botel hadn’t read ESSA carefully.
Before joining the department, Botel, a registered Democrat, worked as the executive director of MarylandCAN, a state-level education advocacy organization. He previously served as a teacher and as the founding principal of a KIPP charter school in Baltimore.
“I am excited to see what our nation’s students accomplish in this new era of innovation and accountability,” Botel wrote in his goodbye letter. “I hope, as I know you do, that we will see our country progress in terms of how our students’ outcomes compare to the outcomes of their peers around the world and in terms of how well we educate every student, of every background.”
Photo: Swikar Patel for Education Week
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