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Secretary Cardona Announces Educators and a Parent Leader on Board to Oversee the Nation’s Report Card

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WASHINGTON—Today, U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona announced the newest appointments to the National Assessment Governing Board, which oversees the country’s only ongoing, nationally representative assessment of student achievement. The newest board members include a fourth-grade teacher, an eighth-grade teacher, a high school principal, and a parent leader. Former North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue is also reappointed as Board Chair.

The 26-member governing board is responsible for deciding which subjects the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) assesses, determining assessment content, setting achievement levels that describe student performance, and pursuing new ways to make NAEP results useful and meaningful to the public. Although the Board operates independently, the National Assessment of Educational Progress Authorization Act calls for members to be appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Education.

“Decisions about how we measure student progress and the future of important tools like the Nation’s Report Card must be informed by the voices of parents, educators, and school leaders,” said Secretary Cardona. “The appointees announced today offer decades of combined experience working directly with students, families, and educators and command tremendous respect in their communities. As we work to help students catch up in the classroom and fully recover from the pandemic, I’m confident that their diverse perspectives will be assets to the National Assessment Governing Board.”

“After the disruptions of the pandemic, it is more important than ever to help the public understand whether students are making academic progress. The Governing Board is privileged to welcome these distinguished leaders working with students and families across the country to help shape the future of the Nation’s Report Card,” said Executive Director of the Governing Board Lesley Muldoon.

The terms of the Governing Board appointees—three new Board members and one reappointed member—officially began on Oct. 1, 2022, and will end on Sept. 30, 2026.

The Governing Board members appointed and the roles they represent on the Board are:

  • Anna King, General Public Representative: King is the 57th president of National PTA. She has over 20 years of experience with PTA, serving in many leadership roles, including Oklahoma PTA president and National PTA Vice president of Membership. She currently is a board member of the Douglass Law and Public Safety Academy in Oklahoma City, Community Outreach Lead for Moms Demand Action Oklahoma Chapter, and Member of the WestEd Advisory Board. King has received several State Lifetime Achievement awards, including National PTA and in her home state, Oklahoma. In 2021, she was named the Oklahoma City Public Schools Foundation Wall of Fame Unsung Hero. King and her husband Glenn have three children and 11 grandchildren and run a family mobile catering business.
  • Jon T. Pickinpaugh, Secondary School Principal: Pickinpaugh has been an educator in Nebraska for over twelve years, distinguishing himself as a master teacher and transformational school leader. As a middle school science teacher in South Sioux City, NE, he was awarded the South Sioux City Schools Teacher of the Year—the youngest to ever receive this award. He was a Milken Educator Award recipient in 2017, making him only 1 of 47 educators in Nebraska to receive this national honor. Currently, Pickinpaugh is a secondary school principal and director of alternative education at the UMÓⁿHOⁿ Nation Public School in Macy, NE. Pickinpaugh has also spoken and presented his ideas on education at many national conferences. Most recently, he was a keynote speaker for Pegasus Springs Education Summit in Orlando, Florida.
  • Michael A. Pope, Eighth-Grade Teacher: Pope is an eighth-grade science teacher for the Department of Defense Education Activity Dependent Schools (DoDEA). Since 2006, Pope has taught at Zama American Middle School at Camp Zama in Japan, where he is also served as the gifted education and AVID coordinator and Junior Science and Humanities Symposium sponsor for middle and high school student researchers. Pope’s distinguished teaching career includes being named a 2022 National Teacher Hall of Fame finalist, the 2021 Pacific East District Teacher of the Year, a 2021 TOP 50 finalist for the Varkey Foundation’s Global Teacher Prize, a 2001 Fulbright Memorial Fund and 2018 Fulbright Global Teacher Fellow, and a two-time DoDEA state-level finalist for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. He formerly served as a teacher and paraprofessional for the DeKalb County Board of Education in Georgia where he received the 2002 Georgia Middle School Teacher of Promise Award.
  • Nardi Routten, Fourth-Grade Teacher (reappointed): Routten is a fourth-grade teacher at Creekside Elementary School in New Bern, North Carolina, where she serves as Creekside’s Partners in Education (PIE) ambassador and represents 4th Grade on the School Improvement Team.  Previously, she taught fourth grade at Chester A. Moore Elementary in Fort Pierce, Fla., where she was the grade’s department chair, master teacher, and mentor to new teachers. She taught in St. Lucie County, Florida, for more than 20 years, also mentoring new and veteran teachers in reading, reciprocal learning, and building a positive classroom culture. Routten has received local and national recognitions of excellence in teaching, including the Milken Educator Award in 2014 and recently as North Carolina finalist for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. First appointed to the Board in 2018, Routten serves on the Assessment Development Committee and the Nomination’s Committee.

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