LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles school board named Michelle King superintendent of the nation's second largest school district on Monday.
King is being hailed by district officials as both the first woman in 80 years and the first African-American to head the school district.
"I want to ensure that the enthusiasm for teaching and learning that I experienced in LAUSD and that my three daughters experienced when they were in school — is the reality for all of our students," King, who is currently chief deputy superintendent, said in a statement.
The Los Angeles Unified School District board selected King, 54, after a nationwide search that began in October. The board will vote on King's contract at today's meeting.
In selecting King, the board "is validating the experience and leadership of an educator who knows this district and has devoted her career to the mission of the LAUSD family," school board member Ref Rodriguez said in a statement.
King began her career in 1985 as a science and math teacher at Porter Middle School in Granada Hills, a northern Los Angeles community. She rose through the ranks to assistant principal and then principal at Hamilton High Schools in the affluent Cheviot Hills community in West Los Angeles.
She later moved to district offices as chief of Divisions of Student Health and Human Services and then positions of increased responsibility before being named chief deputy superintendent in October 2014.
King replaces interim superintendent Ramon Cortines, who was hired in October 2014 after the former superintendent, John Deasy, resigned under pressure from the board.
Deasy, who ran LAUSD for three years, championed the school district's much-maligned plan to provide all students with a bond-funded iPad.
Cortines has twice headed the district, once in 2000 as interim, and a spend time for a two-year stretch starting on Jan. 1, 2009.