The Washington Post

Pr. George’s official tapped as chief of staff for Montgomery schools superintendent

Montgomery County Schools Superintendent Joshua Starr on July 25, 2011, at Richard Montgomery High School in Rockville. (Katherine Frey/The Washington Post)

Andrew Zuckerman will serve as Montgomery County Schools Superintendent Joshua P. Starr’s new chief of staff starting June 17.

Zuckerman is an associate superintendent in Prince George’s County public schools and will replace Brian Edwards. Edwards has been chief of staff since October 2007, but added duties overseeing the school system’s communications department when the chief communications person left in 2010.

Starr said having a chief of staff dedicated solely to overseeing the operations of the superintendent's office will be important as Montgomery takes on new initiatives to redefine the county’s definition of a successful student. Starr has added social emotional well-being and creative problem solving to the cadre of skills students should have upon graduating Montgomery schools, along with the traditional academic competencies.

The switch will allow Edwards to focus on communications, which will become increasingly important as the system grows and the district plans to expand Curriculum 2.0 in grades 4 and 5 next school year.

“Despite the most heroic efforts, it’s not always possible to do two jobs at once,” Starr said of splitting the chief of staff’s responsibilities.

Edwards was a key part in helping Starr transition as head of Montgomery County schools after Starr left his job leading the school system in Stamford, Conn. Starr has been superintendent in Montgomery County since July 2011.

Before coming to Prince George’s, Zuckerman served as an administrator for public charter schools in Brooklyn, N.Y., and New Haven, Conn. He also worked as dean of students at KIPP DC: Key Academy in Washington, D.C.

Zuckerman’s position doesn’t increase the budget since the school system plans to use existing funds to make the change, according to school officials.

Lynh Bui is a Prince George's County public safety reporter and former Montgomery County education reporter.

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