About this blog Subscribe to this blog

Superintendents: States Switch Between Elected & Appointed

It wasn't much of a surprise to find out from the Council of Chief State School Officers that most state superintendents are still appointed -- by a state board or a governor, usually.  You can see the full list they sent me below.  Only 14 are elected.

What was a bit surprising was that the average tenure is so brief -- 2 years 7 months -- which is more along the lines of what you'd expect from a big-city district superitendent -- and that several states have gone back and for the between elected and appointed (or are considering it now).

For example, I'm told that Louisiana has a proposal to make the state superintendent elected, and that Wyoming has a state director of education along with an elected superintendent. (California has had a version of this at times over the years -- one elected official and a second appointed official working under the governor.) Tennessee switched 20 years ago, and Oregon switched more recently.  

Chiefs list below.  There's also a NASBE document from last spring that includes governance information about state boards and other key features.

Method of appointment: 18 appointed by Governor, 23 by state board of education, 14 Elected, 3 other

 

State

Chief Method of Selection

North Carolina Department of Public Instruction

Elected

North Dakota Department of Public Instruction

Elected

Georgia Department of Education

Elected

Oklahoma State Department of Education

Elected

New Hampshire Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

Florida Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Alabama Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Maine Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

Nebraska Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Minnesota Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

New Jersey Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

Appointed by SBE

Oregon Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

Kansas State Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Washington State Department Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction

Elected

Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction

Elected

Guam Public School System

Appointed by SBE

Department of Defense Education Activity

Other

Nevada Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

Michigan Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

American Samoa Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

Rhode Island Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Iowa Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

Nevada Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

Colorado Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Alaska Department of Education and Early Development

Appointed by SBE

Wyoming Department of Education

Elected

Kentucky Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Mississippi Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Tennessee Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

Arizona Department of Education

Elected

Montana Office Department of Public Instruction

Elected

Arkansas Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

New York Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Illinois State Department  of Education

Appointed by SBE

Maryland Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Idaho Department of Education

Elected

District of Columbia Office of the State Superintendent of Education

Other

Hawaii State Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Utah State Department Office of Education

Appointed by SBE

Bureau of Indian Education

Other

Puerto Rico Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

Delaware Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

Appointed by SBE

West Virginia Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Connecticut Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Indiana Department of Education

Elected

Ohio Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands Public School System

Appointed by Governor

South Dakota Department of Education & Cultural Affairs

Elected

New Mexico Public Education Department

Appointed by Governor

Virgin Islands Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

Pennsylvania Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

California Department of Education

Elected

Vermont Agency of Education

Appointed by Governor

Louisiana Department of Education

Appointed by SBE

Virginia Department of Education

Appointed by Governor

South Carolina Department of Education

Elected

 

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Advertisement

Advertisement

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in This Week In Education are strictly those of the author and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Scholastic, Inc.