Mississippi chooses former D.C. schools administrator Carey Wright as superintendent of education.

Carey Wright

Carey Wright

JEFF AMY, Associated Press

 

JACKSON, Mississippi — Mississippi’s state Board of Education has chosen former Washington., D.C., schools administrator Carey Wright as superintendent of education.

A person with direct knowledge of her selection told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the appointment had not yet been formally announced.

Wright was the only woman among five finalists who interviewed Tuesday.

She became chief academic officer of the District of Columbia Public Schools, serving under Michelle Rhee, whose aggressive style was strongly criticized. Rhee left in 2010, with Wright staying until earlier this year. Wright was earlier associate superintendent of Montgomery County, Md., schools.

Wright would be the first permanent female schools superintendent in Mississippi. Interim superintendent Lynn House is also a woman.

Wright also had interviewed for local superintendent positions in Omaha, Neb., and Des Moines, Iowa in recent months. In both cases she was not chosen.

Wright left the Washington school system in March. Her last salary there was $157,266. Wright would earn up to $305,000 a year in Mississippi, which is the cap on the state superintendent’s pay.

The state Senate must confirm the board’s choice by the end of the 2014 regular legislative session

House has served since Tom Burnham resigned last year. She was not a candidate for the permanent post

The only identified Mississippi candidate was Clinton Superintendent Phil Burchfield.

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