After abruptly stepping down this summer from her post as New York state’s education commissioner, MaryEllen Elia has a new job.
Starting this month, Elia is a senior fellow at the International Center for Leadership in Education, a New York-based consulting company focused on school improvement and sharing best practices between school districts.
Elia’s portfolio will be national in focus, according to a press release, and will include community schools that have in-house wraparound services, teacher evaluation systems, standards, school choice, and urban education.
“I hope to translate the experiences I have garnered during my career into lessons to help improve classrooms, schools and districts for students in every state,” Elia said in a statement. The company is a division of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, a Boston-based company that publishes textbooks and other education materials.
Elia’s sudden departure shocked many of the state’s top education officials; she had not informed the state’s Board of Regents before announcing her plans to step down in July. Two other high ranking state education officials have left in recent months, leaving some education insiders concerned about gaps in leadership and institutional knowledge at an education department responsible for overseeing over 2.6 million students in grades K-12.
The International Center for Leadership in Education has deep roots in the state’s education department: Its founder, Bill Daggett, worked to promote a technology education curriculum as a department official.
The state’s interim education commissioner is Beth Berlin, who will hold the post while the Regents conduct a search.