US Education Secretary Duncan to Step Down

Last Friday, President Obama announced that U.S. Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan intends to step down in December, and that he (the President) has selected Dr. John B. King Jr., the Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education, to replace him.  Secretary Duncan says he made the decision because of the strain of being away from his family, who now live in Chicago, his hometown.

John King has been a teacher, a principal, a leader of school systems, and a state chief of education in New York before entering his current role. Duncan called him “a remarkable educator and proven leader with a deep passion for educational equity.”    King, who lost his mother when he was 8 and his father when he was 12, credits his public school teachers for giving him hope. keeping him alive and his becoming a teacher.  He was profiled in this Huffington Post piece.

You can also read the transcript of The President’s comments about the transition and both men, as well as their own comments, here.