NYC Schools Chancellor Carranza resigns after 3 years; Bronx superintendent Porter takes his place

Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza speaks at a news conference at the Office of Emergency Management about the Coronavirus, March 2, 2020. (Photo: Ben Fractenberg/THE CITY)

After three years at the helm of the nation’s largest public schools system, Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza announced Friday that he will be resigning in mid-March, citing the personal toll of the COVID-19 pandemic as the reason for his departure.

Meisha Ross Porter, Bronx executive superintendent, will succeed Carranza, becoming the first Black woman to hold the chancellor’s office.

“This is a bittersweet moment for me,” said Carranza. “I came to New York City three years ago with a mission to help the Department of Education reach its full potential and of course  to serve and lift up all, not just some, but all of our public school children.”

Carranza fought back tears as he revealed that he has lost 11 family members and close childhood friends to the virus during the pandemic and that he needs to take time to grieve.

“I know the pandemic has not been easy for you or for any New Yorker and make no mistake, I am a New Yorker not by birth by but choice, a New Yorker who has lost 11 family and close childhood friends to the pandemic,” he said.

The chancellor said he felt comfortable finally taking time to process the impact the virus has taken on his family now that officials have “stabilized” the public school system which has faced multiple setbacks since schools shuttered last March.

Porter, a native of Jamaica, Queens, said that she would do everything to reopen open schools again adding the city is “ready to go” on reopening high schools for students enrolled in blended learning.

“We’ll expand learning opportunities and do more to address trauma and academic needs because we know that that is very real,” said Porter “This moment is not about what the school system will do alone it is about what New York City will do together to invest in our children.

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