Dr. Lisa Herring

The Atlanta Board of Education has announced Dr. Lisa Herring as finalist for the position of Superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools to replace Meria Carstarphen, whose contract ends in June. 

A native of Macon and Spelman College graduate, Herring has served as superintendent for Birmingham, AL City Schools for the past three years stewarding the system to full district accreditation after being put on probation prior to Herring’s arrival. Under her leadership, the system made significant strides moving its state-issued report card grade from an underperforming F to a passing grade of C. By focusing on “children first” and researched-based interventions, the district also decreased the number of F-rated schools from 22 to six and 67% of all schools improved on their individual state report card with 13 schools moving up a letter grade or more.

In collaboration with the City of Birmingham and United Way of Central Alabama, she helped develop and launch The Birmingham Promise to offer last dollar scholarships and new career and college opportunities for any graduate of Birmingham City Schools. In partnership with Apple, Alabama Power, Tech Birmingham and city leadership she helped with the design and implementation of ED FARM, a first of its kind program to build technology skills in students, teachers and community members. 

Herring holds a Doctorate in Education Administration from Georgia Southern University, an Educational Leadership Certificate from the University of Georgia, and Educational Specialist and Master of Education in School Counseling from the University of South Carolina.

After earning her undergraduate degree from Spelman, Herring completed her observational field work at Atlanta Public Schools’ Therrell High School. During her time at Spelman, Herring also volunteered and worked at Warren Memorial Boys and Girls Club of Atlanta. She is a 2008 graduate of Leadership Georgia and spent several years as a school counselor and assistant director of student support services in DeKalb County with a similar role in Bibb County. More recent education leadership roles include Deputy Superintendent of Academics of Charleston County, SC School District and Chief Academic Officer of Jefferson County, KY Public Schools.   

“My calling is truly to serve all people regardless of their background or influence and it would be an honor to serve the people of Atlanta,” said Dr. Herring, “I am a trained counselor who knows to listen and learn in order to better serve the community, so I look forward to hearing your questions and concerns as we seek unique ways to engage together during this time of social distancing.”  

 In compliance with Georgia law, the Board must wait a minimum of 14 days between announcing a final candidate for the position of Superintendent and making the appointment official. Given the current social distancing restrictions in place due to COVID-19, the Board may extend that period to ensure Atlanta Public School stakeholders have a chance to learn more about Herring. This will be accomplished through a series of virtual meetings, virtual question and answer sessions and local media opportunities.

 Questions and concerns may be submitted through the following channels by email at    atlantaboard@atlanta.k12.ga.us, by phone at (404) 802-2267, in writing to Atlanta Board of Education, 130 Trinity Avenue SE, Atlanta, Georgia 30303, or by visiting  https://www.atlantapublicschools.us/domain/14240 (select Superintendent Search).

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Collin KelleyEditor

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.