Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Stefan Pryor, Charter School Founder, Next CT Ed Commish

DOUBLE STOP THE PRESSES – THIS IS HUGE!!!  Yet another state (my home state) has picked an incredible reformer as commissioner: Stefan Pryor, a long-time friend of mine who ROCKS!  He's one of the founders of Amistad Academy, the amazing charter school in New Haven that led to the creation of the Achievement First charter network:

Stefan Pryor, Charter School Founder, Next CT Ed Commish

Rick Green

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Stefan Pryor, deputy mayor of Newark, NJ and one of the original founders of the the public charter school Amistad Academy in New Haven, will be named Connecticut's next education commissioner tomorrow.

Pryor, who is 39, currently serves as deputy mayor of Newark, NJ, in charge of economic and housing development. Before that he served as president of the Lower Mahattan Development Corporation, which planned redevelopment in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks.

It is Pryor's background as one of the founders of one of the state's oldest and most established charter schools, the Amistad Academy, which opened in 1999. This will draw the attention of the state's teacher unions, which have often clashed with charter schools. It's a sign that Gov. Malloy still has plans for big changes in public education.

A Yale Law grad, a former alderman and aide to New Haven Mayor John DeStefano, the New York Times described him as "ambitous, and civic-centric, beyond his years." As head of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, the Times wrote in a 2006 profile:

... In five years with the agency, he has taken one vacation, a 10-day trip to Israel with friends that, for him, lasted four days before developments on the downtown front brought him back to the office.

I've got a call into Pryor,


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