Federal

St. Paul Will Lose Top Hmong Official

By Mary Ann Zehr — January 09, 2007 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

The highest-ranking administrator in the St. Paul, Minn., school system who is Hmong, a member of one of the city’s largest ethnic groups, is leaving the school system to help create a charter school that focuses on Hmong language and culture.

Mo Chang, the charter school liaison and special-projects coordinator for the school district, plans to leave Feb. 28 to become the start-up director for the Community School of Excellence, scheduled to open next fall. The school’s sponsor is Concordia University, in St. Paul.

Ms. Chang, who began working in the school district 21 years ago as a teacher’s aide, has earned a master’s degree in teaching and learning and has become licensed to be a principal or superintendent. She said she believes she can better meet the educational and cultural needs of Hmong students in a charter school than through the St. Paul school district.

With charter school governance, she said, “I will have leeway and the autonomy to do whatever it takes.”

She added: “We can initiate a project and start the next day if we want to. It’s harder to do in a big district.”

Twenty-nine percent of the district’s 41,000 students are Hmong, and most are English-language learners. The Hmong are a Laotian ethnic group whose members began coming to the United States as refugees in the late 1970s after the Vietnam War. (“Team-Teaching Helps Close Language Gap,” Dec. 6, 2006.)

Ms. Chang, the only Hmong member of a “cabinet” that meets regularly with St. Paul Superintendent Meria Carstarphen, told Education Week in November that if the St. Paul school district didn’t create a magnet school focusing on Hmong language and culture, it would continue to lose students to charter schools such as Hmong Academy and Hope Academy.

Deb Henton, the chief of staff for the St. Paul school system, said that she hasn’t received or seen a formal proposal for a Hmong-focused magnet school, but said the idea was discussed in a meeting the superintendent had with Hmong leaders last fall.

At the time of the Education Week interview, Ms. Chang already had decided to leave the school system but wasn’t ready to say so publicly, she said recently.

A version of this article appeared in the January 10, 2007 edition of Education Week

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Assessment Webinar
The State of Assessment in K-12 Education
What is the impact of assessment on K-12 education? What does that mean for administrators, teachers and most importantly—students?
Content provided by Instructure
Jobs January 2022 Virtual Career Fair for Teachers and K-12 Staff
Find teaching jobs and other jobs in K-12 education at the EdWeek Top School Jobs virtual career fair.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Reading & Literacy Webinar
Proven Strategies to Improve Reading Scores
In this webinar, education and reading expert Stacy Hurst will provide a look at some of the biggest issues facing curriculum coordinators, administrators, and teachers working in reading education today. You will: Learn how schools
Content provided by Reading Horizons

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Federal Citing Educator and Parent Anxieties, Senators Press Biden Officials on Omicron Response
Lawmakers expressed concern about schools' lack of access to masks and coronavirus tests, as well as disruptions to in-person learning.
5 min read
Dr. Rochelle Walensky, Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, left, and Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and chief medical adviser to the president, testify before a Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hearing to examine the federal response to COVID-19 and new emerging variants, Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022 on Capitol Hill in Washington.
Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, left, and Dr. Anthony Fauci, chief medical adviser to the president, testify at a Senate hearing about the federal response to COVID-19.
Greg Nash/Pool via AP
Federal Miguel Cardona Should Help Schools Push Parents to Store Guns Safely, Lawmakers Say
More than 100 members of Congress say a recent shooting at a Michigan high school underscores the need for Education Department action.
3 min read
Three Oakland County Sheriff's deputies survey the grounds outside of the residence of parents of the Oxford High School shooter on Dec. 3, 2021, in Oxford, Mich.
Three Oakland County Sheriff's deputies survey the grounds outside of the Crumbley residence while seeking James and Jennifer Crumbley, parents of Oxford High School shooter Ethan Crumbley, on Dec. 3, 2021, in Oxford, Mich.
Jake May/The Flint Journal via AP
Federal In Reversal, Feds Seek to Revive DeVos-Era Questions About Sexual Misconduct by Educators
The Education Department's decision follows backlash from former education Secretary Betsy DeVos and other conservatives.
4 min read
Illustration of individual carrying binary data on his back to put back into the organized background of 1s and 0s.
iStock/Getty Images Plus
Federal Biden Administration Lays Out Its Top Priorities for Education Grants
The pandemic's impact and a diverse, well-prepared educator workforce are among areas the administration wants to fund at its discretion.
2 min read
Education Secretary Miguel Cardona speaks during the daily briefing at the White House in Washington on Aug. 5, 2021.
U.S. Secretary of Education Secretary Miguel Cardona speaks during a White House briefing.
Susan Walsh/AP