Who is Mary Lord?
- A 40-year resident of the District of Columbia.
- A parent active in schools and community.
- An elected member of the State Board of Education since its start in 2007 and its former vice president, currently completing a four-year term as the At-Large member.
- An award-winning education reporter and editor.
- A national leader who brings the District of Columbia's voice to the federal education table as Immediate Past President of the National Association of State Boards of Education.
- A proven, effective advocate for students, teachers, and families.
- Committed to raising the academic bar and building high-quality, safe, and healthy schools where all children can flourish.
- Well informed about education policies and tools that have worked, and not worked, elsewhere.
- Someone who genuinely cares about education. Click here for the 5 top reasons Mary's in this race.
What's Mary Lord's Track Record?
As a State Board member, Mary Lord has presided over the biggest policy changes in local school governance since Home Rule as well as the sweeping rewrite of the federal No Child Left Behind law, and fought to ensure that all students are prepared for 21st century success:
- Established benchmarks for what teachers must cover in subjects from art to literacy to math that now drive and enrich instruction for every student in every school in every Ward.
- Led the successful effort to adopt the Next Generation Science Standards, which include hands-on engineering design and open pathways to well-paid local jobs.
- Successfully advocated for restoring the Ombudsman for Public Education, who was hired by the State Board and now is resolving hundreds of problems for students and parents citywide along with the Chief Student Advocate, a new position created by the City Council.
- Adopted updated health education standards that address such issues as bullying, peer pressure, depression, gender identity, violence, and nutrition.
- Approved the District's first-ever state diploma, opening pathways to job advancement for adults who pass the GED.
- Helped develop DC's initial waiver from No Child Left Behind's most draconian requirements, then worked to refine later accountability plans - including holding teachers and schools harmless during the first year of administering the new PARCC assessment.
- Changed teacher licensing rules to attract top talent while also requiring evidence of effectiveness.
- Helped save the citywide Science Fair so kids could compete with the best in the country and opened the door for our graduating seniors to attend the prestigious National Youth Science Camp in West Virginia.
Why Mary is running for office
The State Board has three major initiatives in the works, and with your help Mary would like to stick around and complete them:
- Engage the public in crafting a new school accountability plan to replace No Child Left Behind's narrow focus on reading and math tests.
- Revise graduation requirements to support quality vocational education, civic engagement, and such real-world skills as financial literacy.
- Promote policies aimed at closing the opportunity/achievement gap.
Why your help is important
You know your community. The District has many neighborhoods with different strengths and needs.
You tell us what needs to be done. You hear and see things that are important.
You know your kids. Families know their kids best. While it won't happen overnight, the standards the State Board sets will eventually shape the futures of all our families.
You know what matters. Sure, everyone wants "the best" for kids. But every student has different strengths and it's quite another matter to figure out how to make a system that delivers results for as many kids as possible. It's listening to you that helps make it clear which results really matter.
Let's Be Frank
Mary's passion is public education not politics. Education policy tools and techniques are her "thing," the District of Columbia is her home, she's done a great job so far, and she's shown she's willing to listen. It simply makes good sense to re-elect Mary Lord to the State Board of Education on November 8.