School Board School names new CEO

Following a monthslong national search, School Board School has selected a longtime educator with a background in policy as its new top executive officer.

The nonprofit described the hiring of Jeremy Jones as a significant milestone in its journey towards deepening its impact in Cincinnati and scaling its programming nationwide.

Jones comes to the CEO role with a diverse background in the education space – from working as a middle school math teacher and principal in Houston, Texas, to serving as executive director of the Maine Charter School Commission, to managing state-level media relations and public outreach for a school district in Nashville.

Most recently, Jones served for nearly two years as the executive director of EAGLE College Preparatory Schools in Phoenix, Arizona.

Jeremy Jones

“Our students deserve the absolute best schools we can give them,” said Jones, who’ll be moving from Nashville to Cincinnati for the position. “The work already underway in Cincinnati is proof that supporting capacity-building efforts in the education ecosystem can lead to measurable changes for children that help them flourish in school and in life.”

Working to enhance change in education

Founded in 2018, School Board School brings together education advocates and aspiring school board members and provides them with the knowledge and support needed to make meaningful systemic improvements. 

To date, more than 100 Greater Cincinnati residents have taken part in the School Board School fellowship program, and thousands of people across the country have benefited from the free virtual sessions it offers on civic engagement in education.

Several of those participants are now serving on local school boards or staff members for local government leaders. But many others are doing their part in less formal ways, such as by writing opinion pieces for media outlets, testifying in from the statehouse, volunteering on campaigns or working for nonprofits. 

The roster also includes a fair number of teachers and principals who want to have a greater impact on their school.

Board Chair Harold Brown believes Jones has the potential to extend the organization’s reach by connecting with new communities across the United States.

The organization has already started working to establish School Board School satellite locations in Chicago and St. Louis, and the goal is to expand into eight regions within three years.

The goal is to eventually build a national network of elected officials and grassroots leaders who are working together to build school systems where every child can thrive, Brown said.

“We believe Jeremy’s passion for education, students and families, along with his experience with schools at a local and state level, will allow us to continue School Board School’s impact on students across the nation,” he continued.

Entering a new era

Jones plans to work closely with School Board School’s founding executive director, Elisa Hoffman, in the coming days and weeks to ensure an effective transition into the role, Brown said. Brown praised Hoffman for “her vision and passion that has brought us to a place where we have a program so effective that organizations in cities across the country want to replicate it.”

Hoffman, who’s staying with the organization in a newly created strategy position, expressed pride in having grown School Board School from an “idea to being national leaders in this work.” She also voiced excitement about where it’ll go under Jones’ leadership.

Elisa Hoffman

Right now, the School Board School team is working on several initiatives, including setting up its next cohort, Cincinnati Class 6. Applications are due by June 11. The organization will host its annual Advocate for Education Day coming on Sept. 14, which offers a day of learning, building community and taking action in the ramp up to November. Registration for that opens this summer.

“This is an exciting time for School Board School as Jeremy leads us into a new chapter,” Hoffman said.

School Board School

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