John White (Louisiana politician)

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John C. White
Louisiana Superintendent of Education
Assumed office
January 2012
Preceded by Ollie Tyler (interim)
Personal details
Born November 1975
Washington, D.C.
Residence Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA
Alma mater

St. Albans School
University of Virginia

New York University
Occupation Educational administrator

John C. White (born November 1975) is the Louisiana state superintendent of education. White was appointed to his current position in January 2012 by the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education.[1] That year he launched Louisiana Believes, the state’s plan to ensure every child is on track to college or a professional career. In the time since, White has worked to unify the state’s fragmented early childhood system, to modernize expectations and curriculum for all students, to professionalize the preparation of educators, to provide pathways to prosperity for all high school graduates, and to provide families with expansive school options irrespective of their financial means.[2]

The state has 700,000 public school pupils and 50,000 teachers.[3]


White was born and raised in Washington, D.C. and graduated in 1994 from St. Albans School. White received a B.A. in English with distinction from the University of Virginia and a Master's in Public Administration from New York University.

Educational and political career[edit]

After his time at the University of Virginia, White signed up with the non-profit organization Teach For America, headquartered in New York City which places high-achieving recent college graduates and professionals to teach for at least two years in low-income communities. During his TFA sent him to teach English for three years at the large William L. Dickinson High School in Jersey City, New Jersey. He was thereafter an educational administrator in Chicago. In 2006, White worked in New York City under Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Chancellor Joel Klein as Deputy Chancellor, launching the Innovation Zone, a network of 100 21st Century schools that use technology to personalize student learning, and leading the city's efforts to turn around more than 100 failing schools and start 500 new charter and district schools.

In May 2011, then State Superintendent Paul Pastorek named White to head the Recovery School District in New Orleans, a state agency created in 2003 to supervise those public schools declared failures based on recurring poor pupil performance over a four-year period. White reorganized the RSD central office and included neighborhood groups in the decision-making process. Through a $2 billion school rebuilding plan pushed by White, pupils in the RSD have benefited from new or renovated campuses.[4]

White's appointment as Louisiana State Superintendent was approved by the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, an elected and appointed body that sets state educational policies. The appointment was decided by a nine-to-one vote, with one abstention.[5]

He also serves as chairman of the independent non-profit advocacy organization Chiefs for Change[6] and was an Academic Visitor to the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.[7]


In 2015, Louisiana 4th grade students made greater gains on the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) in reading than those made by any other state. In mathematics, Louisiana 4th graders made the second-highest gains among states.[8]

Since 2012, Louisiana’s high school graduation rate has risen by 5.2 percentage points.[9] More than 6,300 more graduates from the class of 2016 achieved a college-going ACT score than in the class of 2012, and over the last three years, Louisiana is the most improved state on the ACT among states using the ACT as their high school test. Louisiana now ranks third in the South among such states for composite ACT average score.[10]

In 2015, Louisiana was also the nation’s second fastest-improving state on Advanced Placement (AP) tests. The number of Louisiana students earning AP scores qualifying students for college credit has increased by 116 percent since 2012. And the number of Louisiana graduates annually entering college has grown by more than 2,400 over that period, a 12 percent increase.[11]


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Louisiana Enrollment Counts". Louisiana Department of Education. 
  4. ^ "Facilities | 10 Years after Hurricane Katrina". Retrieved 2017-04-12. 
  5. ^ "Andrew Vanacore, State board of education votes overwhelmingly for John White as next state superintendent, January 11, 2013". New Orleans Times-Picayune. Retrieved October 21, 2013. 
  6. ^ Ujifusa, rew; 10, SEW March; 2015. "La. Supt. John White to Lead Chiefs for Change | RealClearEducation". Retrieved 2017-04-12. 
  7. ^ "PEPG People". Retrieved 2017-04-12. 
  8. ^ "Test Results". Retrieved 2017-04-12. 
  9. ^ "Data Management Master Library". Retrieved 2017-04-12. 
  10. ^ "Louisiana ACT scores edge up again". Retrieved 2017-04-12. 
Preceded by
Ollie Tyler (interim)
Louisiana State Superintendent of Education

John C. White

Succeeded by