Last updated on: 5/31/2012 | Author:

Richard Nyankori, PhD Biography

Former DC Deputy Chancellor for Special Education
Pro to the question "Do Standardized Tests Improve Education in America?"

“[T]here are a lot of people out there who think we’re too focused on standardized tests. But, really, how can you diagnose learning problems, move kids to the next level or hold teachers accountable if you don’t measure student progress in an objective, standardized way? Advocating for standardized tests doesn’t mean killing creativity in classrooms or supporting a one-size-fits-all approach to instruction. The tests are simply measurement tools…

We all have to get on the scale when we go to the doctor for a checkup. No one expects each and everyone one [sic] of us to weigh the same, and no one expects us to follow the same diet or exercise regimen. But just because our prescription for good health may vary, that doesn’t mean we don’t have to get on that scale.”

Cowritten with Michelle Rhee, “Accommodate Don’t Discriminate,”, May 5, 2011

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Vice President of Product Development (Common Core & Teacher Effectiveness Initiatives), Insight Education Group, Inc., Sep. 2011-present
  • Deputy Chancellor for Special Education, District of Columbia Public Schools, 2007-2011 (Special Assistant to Chancellor Michelle Rhee, June 2007-Sep. 2008)
  • Director, Training and Certification, The New Teacher Project, 2001-2007
  • Mathematics, science, reading, and special education teacher/Assistant Principal/Acting Principal, Baltimore City Public Schools, 1993-1997
  • Corps Member, Teach for America, 1993
  • Former Training Designer and Higher Education Consultant, Performance Learning Systems
  • Former School Building Administrator, Baltimore City and Harford County, MD
  • PhD, Education Policy, Planning, and Administration, University of Maryland, College Park, 2005
  • MS, Curriculum & Instruction-Administrator Certification, McDaniel College, 1996
  • BS, Sociology, Emory University, 1992
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