State Superintendent of Education - Office of the State Superintendent of Education

Washington, DC, DC
Full Time
Senior Executive

OPEN: March 8, 2024

CLOSE: Open until filled

SALARY: Executive Service, Grade 5 ($153,350 to $241,471)


The State Superintendent of Education is charged with providing strategic vision, clear direction, and steady leadership to DC’s state education agency, the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE), which serves over 90,000 students in public schools across more than 60 local education agencies. This position serves as the Chief State School Officer for the District of Columbia and represents OSSE and the District of Columbia in all matters before the United States Department of Education (USED) and with other states and educational entities. The State Superintendent of Education performs the functions of a state education agency for the District of Columbia under applicable federal law, including grant making, oversight, and state educational agency functions for standards, assessments, and federal accountability requirements for elementary and secondary education. 

Position Overview 

The State Superintendent works under the broad administrative direction of the Deputy Mayor of Education, and operates with a high degree of independence in planning, designing, and carrying out the goals and objectives of OSSE. Within the context of OSSE’s strategic priorities, the incumbent independently handles highly sensitive matters and situations, accomplishes varied and complex assignments and special projects, and provides authoritative recommendations based on policy consideration, judgment, and the Deputy Mayor of Education's position and priorities. The State Superintendent’s advice and recommendations are generally accepted without significant changes. Review of the State Superintendent’s recommendations focuses on such matters as fulfillment of OSSE primary objectives, and any effects on the overall agency. Recommendations and decisions related to new projects and revised objectives are usually evaluated for such considerations as availability of funds and other resources, or District-wide government priorities.

The State Superintendent follows and implements a number of policy guidelines, including Federal and state laws and regulations, which include the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), and the Public Education Reform Amendment Act of 2007. Additional important guidelines for OSSE include law and regulations of the District government, Mayor's Orders and instructions, and policy priorities of the Mayor governing a broad range of programs and issues. The State Superintendent exercises a high degree of judgment, ingenuity, decisiveness, and resourcefulness in implementing, interpreting and applying guidelines. The State Superintendet is usually recognized as an expert in the development and interpretation of guidelines and policy related to education programs, strategic planning and evaluation.

The State Superintendent is appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the Council of the District of Columbia for a four (4) year term.

Duties and Responsibilities 

The State Superintendent of Education performs the following:

  • Manages the day-to-day operations of the Office of the State Superintendent of Education, including: ensuring close oversight of those areas identified as critical action areas; serving as a liaison with education agencies, boards and commissions; driving the overall strategic mission of the agency; and representing the Mayor and/or Deputy Mayor of Education at educational events; and/or accompanying the Mayor to events. 
  • Directs and oversees work through subordinate managers and supervisors. Provides guidance, counsel and instruction to subordinate managers on professional, technical and administrative matters. 
  • Conducts special studies of extremely controversial or sensitive problems that have been identified personally or through other sources. These include changes required to effect improvements in program efficiency, effectiveness and economy. Prepares report of findings and recommends alternative courses of action designed to resolve problems. 
  • Provides authoritative technical advice, assistance and comments on proposed development and enactment of District legislation needed to implement the Mayor’s education policies. 
  • Prescribes minimum amounts of instructional time for all schools, including public, public charter, and private schools. 
  • Oversees the state level functions and activities related to early childhood education ­programs, for children aged birth to five, including licensing of child development facilities, the child care subsidy program, and programmatic supports. 
  • Provides special education transportation services to those students with disabilities who require this accommodation under their Individualized Education Program (IEP).  
  • Issues rules to establish requirements to govern acceptable credit to be granted for studies completed at independent, public, private, public charter schools and private instruction, and for District residency for public and public charter schools. 
  • Formulates and promulgates all rules necessary to carry out OSSE's functions including rules governing the process for review and approval of state level policies by the State Board of Education. 
  • Develops and adopts policies that come within the functions of state educational agencies under federal law, subject to approval of the State Board of Education for those policies that are subject to Board approval. 
  • Conducts studies and pilot projects to develop, review, or test state policy. Review legislation in the Council of the District of Columbia and the Congress to determine impact. Initiates education legislation for the District of Columbia.
  • Develops educational policy and procedures pertaining to education. 
  • Attends major management or execute level meetings where policy and legislative issues are discussed and decisions are made which impact the District of Columbia education programs. 
  • Oversees the ongoing operations of complex data systems, and a significant modernization effort of data systems and processes, including the further development and use of statewide longitudinal data, and implementation of special education and early childhood data systems.
  • Performs other related duties as assigned. 


In addition to a demonstrated ability to successfully achieve the above responsibilities, the ideal candidate will also possess:

  • Masters Degree or higher in education, administration or a closely related field.
  • 5 -7 years documented experience in public school administration, policy development and/or organizational management.
  • Skill and experience in providing leadership in a managerial capacity.
  • Expertise in leading small and large teams and committees in both short and long term settings, towards clear and strategic outcomes.
  • Mastery of US Department of Education regulations and requirements of state education agencies. Mastery of the requirements of federal law, particularly the Elementary and Secondary Education Act as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act, and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. 
  • Expert knowledge of budget, grants, and economic principles and practices along with a comprehensive knowledge of planning and budgeting regulations, guidelines, and processes to prepare long range and short range budgets in accordance with broad agency program policies and objectives. 
  • Mastery of education institutions, their range of services, education policy and laws in the District of Columbia to coordinate and communicate with the various educational institutions. 
  • Mastery of a wide range of programs and services offered by the District of Columbia government agencies and departments in order to perform in depth analysis of a variety of complex educational issues.  Mastery of organizational mission and objectives, operating procedures and guidelines, and educational programs.
  • Understanding of Federal and DC education law.
  • Mastery of management and organizational principles and practicesMastery of planning and programming regulations, guidelines and processes to prepare long range and short range planning in accordance with broad agency program policies and objectives. 
  • Excellent communication skills and presence sufficient to represent OSSE in various settings. Ability to write extensive memoranda, papers and reports clearly, concisely and in a timely fashion. 
  • Skill in interacting with a wide variety of high level officials in the District and Federal governments including members of Congress. representatives from the US Department of Education, members of the Council of the District of Columbia, members of the public schools, and the general public. 

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