In the News: Peter Noonan named a "Top Educators Under 40" by Scholastic Administrator magazine

Scholastic Administrator Magazine, February 2009 — Educator Peter Noonan, Fairfax County Public Schools Assistant Superintendent of Instructional Services, was named a one of the Top Educators Under 40 this month by Scholastic Administrator magazine.

Reporter Caralee Adam asked: How is a younger generation is changing the face of education?

To overcome the enormous challenges facing our schools today, new leaders must emerge—leaders who believe that they can change the system, who demonstrate relentless energy and unyielding passion, and who hold tight to an unwavering commitment to always put children first. Their task is daunting, to say the least, but here is the good news: Some of them are already here. Whether teachers or superintendents or CEOs, these superstars of education are, first and foremost, innovators, and all of them are 40 years old or younger. Out of hundreds of possible candidates, Scholastic Administator chose ten to share their stories here. Through their own words, you’ll feel their frustrations, hear of their accomplishments, and see how their vision for a new day is transforming our schools.

Noonan, 40, said:

About his job: Responsible for curriculum and instruction for 168,000 students, who, among them, speak 140 different languages.

Why he loves his job: “It allows me to focus on what is most important in education: instruction.”

The challenge: “Grasping the magnitude of what needs to be done.”

Biggest accomplishment: Setting up eCART (Electronic Curriculum Assessment Resource Tool) for all teachers to access their curriculum and lessons plans electronically.

Education policy wish: “We need to take a hard look at NCLB. The intent and spirit was good. But we have some outstanding educators and schools that have been labeled as failing, and that has a devastating effect on the community.”

What’s next: “I have a lot of work to do in this position. I have no intention of going anywhere soon.” But ultimately? “I’d like to become a superintendent someday.”

The other educators profiled included:

• Robert Scott, 39, Commissioner of Education, Texas Education Agency, Austin, TX
• Susan Patrick, 38, President and CEO, International Association for K–12 Online Learning (iNACOL), Vienna, VA
• Ron Clark, 37, Founder, Ron Clark Academy, Atlanta, GA
• David Schuler, 38, Superintendent, Township High (IL) School District 214
• Michelle Rhee, 39, Chancellor, D.C. Public Schools
• Kimberly Oliver Burnim, 32, Teacher, Broad Acres Elementary School, Silver Spring, MD
• Meria Carstarphen, 38, Superintendent, St. Paul (MN) Public Schools
• David Levin, 38, Cofounder and Superintendent, kipp Academy, South Bronx, NY

Read the entire article here.