Mastery Charter names a former Philly principal and assistant superintendent as its new CEO - Mastery Charter School

Mastery Charter names a former Philly principal and assistant superintendent as its new CEO

The Philadelphia Inquirer
by Kristen A. Graham

The Mastery Charter network is getting a new chief executive officer, a veteran educator who currently leads public schools in Lowell, Mass.

Joel Boyd, who previously worked as a principal and assistant superintendent in the Philadelphia School District, will succeed Scott Gordon, founder of the sprawling Mastery Charter system.

Mastery educates 14,500 students in 24 charter schools in Philadelphia and Camden.

Boyd, whose hiring was announced Thursday, worked in Philadelphia from 2008 to 2012, first as principal of Woodrow Wilson Middle School, then as an assistant superintendent. He left to become superintendent in Santa Fe, N.M., then worked in Boston public schools before moving to Lowell, a district of about 15,000 students.

Boyd was chosen after numerous community conversations and a nationwide search, and hailed by Mastery board member Sulaiman Rahman as a “bold leader” with a track record of improving students’ academic success.

Mastery wanted someone who had experience leading a large organization, and someone who could navigate the sometimes-complicated Philadelphia charter scene, Rahman said. And though Boyd’s charter experience is limited — he was an administrator at a Lehigh Valley charter school early in his career — Rahman is confident that Boyd is the right pick to lead Mastery forward.

“What we found in Joel was someone who wasn’t your traditional superintendent, someone that we feel shares our philosophy, our culture, who will be in a position to exercise more efficiency, more freedom to innovate,” Rahman said, adding that Boyd is “someone who has the emotional intelligence to work in different communities.”