Leslie T. Fenwick, who served as the dean emeritus of the Howard University School of Education for nearly a decade and remains a faculty member as a professor of educational policy and leadership, was identified as one of two people the president-elect is considering to lead the U.S. Department of Education. If Fenwick is selected and confirmed, she would be the first Black woman and just the third Black person to be Secretary of Education in the federal agency’s more than 40-year existence.
Fenwick’s official Howard University bio shows she is more than qualified for the job.
The wife to former Howard University President H. Patrick Swygert is a former school teacher and administrator who rose through the ranks of higher learning to become a major player in the national education game for both her research and commentary. Notably, Fenwick’s bio says, she is “regularly called upon to testify about educational equity and college access to the U.S. Senate.”
Fenwick is also a co-founder of the American Association of School Administrators Urban Superintendents Academy and a former member of the Harvard University Principals Center Advisory Board.
The Washington Post pointed out that her selection wouldn’t guarantee her Senate confirmation because of several stances she’s taken on education that have been called controversial.
In particular, Fenwick has criticized certain education programs like for-profit charter schools and other initiatives that can profit from public education, which she has called “schemes” that are counterproductive. She doubled down on that stance in a video about urban education reform that was published this past September.
“These schemes are often viewed as new and innovative, but when you look at the history of these schemes — and I use the word ‘schemes’ purposefully — you find that they are rooted in resistance to the Brown legal decision,” Fenwick said, referring to the Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court decision that set a legal mandate to racially integrate the nation’s public schools.
Miguel A. Cardona, Connecticut’s education commissioner, is the other finalist for the cabinet spot.
It was unclear when Biden would make his pick.
However, the two being named as finalists was a nod to Biden’s vow to have a presidential cabinet that looks like America — a pledge for racial inclusion among his top senior advisers. Cardona is a Latino.
Here Are All The Black People In Joe Biden's Cabinet And His Most Senior Advisers
1. Adewale Adeyemo, Deputy Treasury SecretarySource:Twitter 1 of 19
2. Gen. Lloyd Austin, Department of DefenseSource:Getty 2 of 19
3. Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, vice chair of the Democratic National CommitteeSource:Getty 3 of 19
4. Kirsten Clarke, Assistant Attorney General, Civil Rights DivisionSource:Getty 4 of 19
5. Ashley Etienne, Kamala Harris’ Chief Communications Director
5 of 19
Ashley Etienne is the Communications Director for MVP Kamala Harris. She’s not new to the game. Etienne was the communications director for the House Oversight Committee under the late Elijah Cummings. Biden-Harris administration has chosen the best!👏🏽👏🏽👏🏽👏🏽 pic.twitter.com/FLVgWZCdUn— silverprincess💛 (@marsha_vivinate) November 30, 2020
6. Tina Flournoy, Vice President's Chief Of Staff6 of 19
7. Rep. Marcia Fudge, Housing and Urban DevelopmentSource:Getty 7 of 19
8. Joelle Gamble, National Economic CouncilSource:Courtesy of Biden-Harris Transition Team 8 of 19
9. Shuwanza Goff, Deputy Director Of The White House Office Of Legislative AffairsSource:Joe Biden Communications Coalitions 9 of 19
10. Jamie Harrison, DNC ChairSource:Getty 10 of 19
11. Karine Jean-Pierre, White House Deputy Press SecretarySource:Getty 11 of 19
12. Brenda Mallory, Council on Environmental Quality ChairpersonSource:Getty 12 of 19
13. Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, Co-Chair of Biden's Coronavirus Task Force
13 of 19
Finally, some science.— NewsOne (@newsone) November 16, 2020
Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, a doctor and college professor promoting health and healthcare equity for structurally marginalized populations, will co-chair Joe Biden's Covid task force.https://t.co/cUHso6sruX
14. Michael Regan, EPA
14 of 19
Biden picks Michael Regan, top North Carolina environmental official, to run EPA https://t.co/JJzYjFdevB— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) December 17, 2020
15. Susan Rice, White House Domestic Policy Council DirectorSource:Getty 15 of 19
16. Cedric RichmondSource:Getty 16 of 19
17. Cecilia Rouse, Council of Economic Advisors chairpersonSource:Getty 17 of 19
18. Symone Sanders, Vice President's spokesperson
18 of 19
All of the reporting I've seen has indicated @SymoneDSanders is the frontrunner for Press Secretary so I'm expecting her to be picked. But let me add to the chorus to say she is the CREDENTIALS pick in addition to being historic. #BlackWomenLead https://t.co/cvFGjq1xLB pic.twitter.com/4Qd5D14pVR— Reecie @BlackWomenViews (@ReecieColbert) November 14, 2020
19. Linda Thomas-Greenfield, UN AmbassadorSource:Getty 19 of 19
Former Howard University Dean Leslie T. Fenwick Is A Finalist For Biden’s Secretary Of Education was originally published on newsone.com