R.I. education board chairperson to step down, takes brand-new function with U.S. Commerce

BARBARA S. COTTAM will step down on Oct. 6 from her role as chairperson of the R.I. Board of Education to take on a new role with the U.S. Department of Commerce. / PBN FILE PHOTO/STEPHANIE ALVAREZ EWENS
BARBARA S. COTTAM will step down on Oct. 6 from her function as chairperson of the R.I. Board of Education to handle a brand-new function with the U.S. Department of Commerce./ PBN SUBMIT PHOTO/STEPHANIE ALVAREZ EWENS

PROVIDENCE– The state’s education board chairperson will quickly be heading to the country’s capital to deal with Rhode Island’s previous guv.

In a Sept. 28 letter to Gov. Daniel J. McKee, R.I. Board of Education Chairperson Barbara S. Cottam notified the guv that she will be stepping down from the board on Oct. 6 after leading it for the last seven-plus years. Cottam informed the guv that she has actually taken a brand-new task as senior consultant for external affairs with the U.S. Department of Commerce, led by U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina M. Raimondo, in Washington, D.C.

Cottam in her letter informed the guv that in her brand-new function in Washington, she will help administering the commerce department’s “Web for All” effort that, she stated, will permit her to add to the effort of linking every American with the opportunity to gain access to education.

It is presently uncertain who will work as the state’s brand-new education board chairperson, either interim or irreversible. McKee representative Matthew Sheaff informed Providence Organization News on Friday that more information on a brand-new chairperson will be revealed in the coming weeks.

Cottam kept in mind in her period several highlights the state has actually accomplished in education. Together with the state opening its very first Labor force Advancement Education Center in Westerly and in 2020 Rhode Island College’s Labor force Advancement Center in Central Falls, Rhode Island executed the “Rhode Island Guarantee” free-tuition program at the Neighborhood College of Rhode Island, providing citizens within the Ocean State a totally free education chance.

While she stated she will miss out on the active engagement with lots of education specialists in Rhode Island, Cottam stated the state needs to continue to “forge ahead” and motivates the education councils to “make choices that do not underserve any trainee.”

” While education policy will never ever be best, we must never ever stop looking for excellence,” Cottam composed. “We owe it to each other to offer everyone the chance to reach his/her capacity. When we do, we will have leveled the field for all and removed the chance spaces that exist today.”

In a declaration, R.I. Postsecondary Commissioner Shannon Gilkey stated that college has actually taken advantage of Cottam’s stewardship of the board, offering “positive, ingenious and collective management.”

” It is not a surprise that her operate in the U.S. Commerce Department will be concentrated on the fair access to broadband, a must-needed tool for under-resourced trainees who count on the web for online knowing, research study, studying and more,” Gilkey stated. “I thank Chair Cottam for her service to the state and her tradition of exceptional public law.”

James Bessette is the PBN unique jobs editor, and likewise covers the not-for-profit and education sectors. You might reach him at Bessette@PBN.com You might likewise follow him on Twitter at @James_Bessette

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