Board of Education Selects Dr. Joshua P. Starr as Next MCPS Superintendent

April 25, 2011

The Montgomery County Board of Education is pleased to announce the selection of Dr. Joshua P. Starr as its candidate for superintendent of schools for the Montgomery County Public Schools, pending final negotiations for employment and approval by the state superintendent of schools. Dr. Starr is currently the Superintendent of the Stamford (Conn.) Public School system where he has served for the past six years.

Today, the Board of Education unanimously approved the conditional appointment of Dr. Starr. Today’s action is a prelude to a series of public meetings to be scheduled in the near future for the community to meet Dr. Starr prior to his assuming the job as superintendent on July 1, 2011. The meetings will offer Dr. Starr the opportunity to meet with parent, business, education, civic and community leaders and the community at large. 

Dr. Starr is a passionate champion for all students and is committed to ensuring that Montgomery County Public Schools meets the needs of students across the spectrum. This appointment builds upon the work Dr. Starr began as a teacher in 1993 and has spanned a variety of educational positions. Dr. Starr has been the superintendent in Stamford since 2005, where he has distinguished himself by increasing student achievement for all subgroups, emphasizing increased academic rigor, standardizing curriculum, advancing the use of technology, creating business and civic partnerships, and emphasizing community and family engagement efforts aimed at supporting all children in the classroom. Previously, he served at the executive level in the New York City Department of Education, the largest school system in the nation, where he held the position of Director of School Performance and Accountability. Dr. Starr’s first position with the New York City Department of Education was as Deputy Senior Instructional Manager. 

Dr. Starr began his career as a special education teacher in the New York City Public Schools working with severely emotionally disturbed adolescents.  He has also served in administrative roles in Plainfield, New Jersey and Freeport, New York. A self-professed life-long learner, Dr. Starr brings enormous energy, intellect and enthusiasm to his new post as superintendent of schools for MCPS. Dr. Starr holds a doctorate degree in administration and social policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and has published articles in many journals in the field of education.

“The contexts of Stamford and Montgomery County are very similar and I look forward to working with the Board, staff and community to build on the great strengths of MCPS,” said Dr. Starr. “Montgomery County has shown the nation that it is possible to raise academic standards and enable all children to achieve them. By engendering a culture that rests in the belief that all children have unlimited potential, ensuring a systematic focus on great instruction, and establishing processes and structures that support adult learning and development, MCPS has changed the conversation of what is possible in urban public education.”

As the superintendent search process winds to a successful conclusion, the Board would like to thank the citizens of Montgomery County for enthusiastically participating and providing great insights throughout the process. This outcome would not have been possible without the active participation of our community. Community members, parents, staff members, and students shared with the Board their perspectives, opinions, concerns and ideas through the various meetings, focus groups and surveys.  That information formed the foundation of the criteria the Board used to evaluate candidates.  Additionally, a group of citizens that drew widely and broadly from the community met with each of the three finalists and provided invaluable insights to the Board. All of this information was crucial to the members of the Board of Education as they selected Dr. Starr as the next Superintendent of Schools of MCPS.

“Dr. Starr comes to Montgomery County with impressive credentials and skill sets to lead MCPS in times of incredible challenges and opportunities. He comes to us with a deep commitment to openness and is eager to work collaboratively in the best interest of all students,” said Board President Christopher Barclay. “The Board looks forward with great excitement to working with Dr. Starr in building upon the impressive successes that MCPS has garnered over the past twelve years under the leadership of Dr. Jerry D. Weast.“

Dr. Starr and his wife, Emma, have three children. 

Picture of Dr. Joshua Starr


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