Thompson named Interim Commissioner
July 21, 2007
(SitNews) - The State Board of Education & Early Development,
meeting by audioconference July 17, 2007, has named Barbara Thompson
as Interim Commissioner of the Alaska Department of Education
& Early Development.
Thompson's appointment, which is subject to the approval of Governor
Sarah Palin, will begin August 18, 2007, and will last for up
to a year.
The resignation of current Commissioner Roger Sampson takes effect
August 17, 2007. Sampson has been named President of the Education
Commission of the States.
Thompson is currently Deputy Commissioner of the Department of
Education & Early Development.
During Thompson's tenure as Interim Commissioner, the State Board
will search for a permanent Commissioner.
"We are very grateful we have the opportunity to extend
our search for a commissioner," said State Board Chairwoman
Esther Cox. "We feel the department will be in excellent
Seven candidates had applied this month for the Commissioner
position following its advertisement in Alaska and nationally.
Chairwoman Cox thanked the applicants and said their applications
will remain open.
"I am honored that the State Board has asked me to serve
as Interim Commissioner," Thompson said. "The department
will continue to implement the State Board's mission to improve
academic achievement for all students."
Thompson holds a master of arts degree in teaching adult and
community education from Alaska Pacific University and a bachelor
of arts degree in sociology from San Diego State University.
She holds state certification as a teacher of secondary education
in social science.
Thompson also has served as Director and Deputy Director of the
department's Division of Teaching and Learning Support, and as
Acting Administrator and Adult Basic Education Supervisor for
the department's former Office of Adult and Vocational Education.
She serves on the Alaska Council on Domestic Violence and Sexual
The department, based in Juneau, oversees 53 school districts
in the K-12 education system and operates a boarding high school.
The department also operates the state archives, the state library,
two state museums, a statewide arts council, the postsecondary
education commission, and the professional teaching practices
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