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Superintendent Kathy Cox Leaving Georgia to Lead New National Education Organization

U.S. Education Delivery Institute to help states reach their ‘Race to the Top’ goals   MEDIA CONTACTS:   Matt Cardoza, Georgia Department of Education  (404) 651-7358 or  - Follow us on  Twitter  and  Facebook    Alex Harris, U.S. Education Delivery Institute  (202) 349-3425 or   Lauren Stephens, The Education Trust  (202) 293-1217 x373 or   May 17, 2010 -- State School Superintendent Kathy Cox today announced she will leave her post effective June 30 to become the founding CEO of the U.S. Education Delivery Institute (EDI). She will take the helm of EDI on July 1.   EDI is a non-profit dedicated to building the capacity in state public education systems to implement school reform effectively. Launched by Achieve and The Education Trust and with a major pro bono contribution by McKinsey & Co., this new organization will adapt and apply practices developed in the United Kingdom by the Prime Minister’s Delivery Unit—which was led by EDI’s founder Sir Michael Barber. In doing so, EDI will help K-12 and higher education systems connect the dots between state policies and the schools and teachers that must implement them to ensure that they have their intended benefit: dramatically improved student outcomes.   “I am thrilled to join Sir Michael, the Education Trust, and Achieve in launching the U.S. Education Delivery Institute," said Superintendent Cox. "This organization won't be another think tank, but rather the fuel to inject action in state and local efforts to improve student achievement across our country. The performance management methods collectively known as Delivery provide the critical implementation link between system reform and classroom improvement, and thus greater student outcomes.”   “We must seize the opportunity provided by the emerging national agenda to enable states to deliver outstanding results. Employing the delivery approach pioneered in the United Kingdom under Tony Blair and since adopted in a number of other countries can return lasting benefits, from decreased crime rates to improvements in student literacy,” said Barber. “EDI will tailor this approach to the challenge of delivering improved student outcomes in US public education. Kathy Cox is the ideal person to lead this new organization and bring this approach to the US. She is an inspirational leader with an outstanding track record of delivering results for students in Georgia. In short, she brings both the rigor and experience for EDI to succeed. I look forward to working with her.”   Since 2003, Superintendent Cox has made significant strides in ensuring that Georgia’s public K-12 students are leading the nation in improving student achievement. Under her leadership, the nationally-recognized Georgia Performance Standards were developed. She implemented more rigorous graduation requirements for all students and has helped increase the graduation rate by 15 percentage points (63.3% in 2003 to 78.9% currently).   “I will greatly miss my colleagues and friends in Georgia, especially at the Department of Education,” said Superintendent Cox. “But I feel confident that I will be leaving the Department and Georgia’s public K-12 system better than I found it. And in this new position, I will have many opportunities to work with leaders across the country, including Georgia, so I will still be able to help Georgia continue making great progress."   EDI will focus on providing states poised to make bold changes—as evidenced by a competitive application in the federal “Race to the Top” grant competition—with the tools to translate intent at the state level into results at the student level. This work is already underway in Louisiana and Tennessee. In addition, nine public higher education systems are working with EDI to support efforts to cut in half -- by 2015 -- the college-going and college-completion gaps for their low-income and minority students.   "Superintendent Cox has been a passionate advocate for Georgia's students, committed to improving achievement for every child,” said Governor Sonny Perdue. “She pushed strongly for a more rigorous curriculum, which is preparing our students to compete on the global stage. While we will miss her here in Georgia, I share her excitement in this new opportunity."   MORE INFORMATION:   US Education Delivery Institute -   Achieve, Inc. -   The Education Trust -