New Emergency Manager for Detroit Public Schools

By Mike Brownfield | July 15, 2013

Today at Davison Elementary School in Detroit, Governor Rick Snyder announced the appointment of Jack Martin as emergency manager for Detroit Public Schools (DPS) --- and it's a task that he says Martin is well suited for.

"Jack Martin has a tremendous background. He's got a track record of success, both in finance and education," Snyder said. 

Martin is a native Detroiter, a graduate of Detroit Public Schools, and has expertise in finance and public education. He has been a practicing certified public accountant for more than 40 years, has served three U.S. presidents, and held senior roles in the U.S. Department of Education. Most recently, he served as chief financial officer for the City of Detroit and previously as emergency manager of Highland Park Schools.

Snyder congratulated and thanked outgoing emergency manager Roy Roberts for his service, while remarking on DPS' improvements under Roberts' tenure.

"We really have reached that point where a strong foundation is being set. It is being grown, put in place, focusing on student growth, financial stability and a long-term plan for success," Snyder said. "That's a great step forward. Now let's just make sure we continue to do that."

Two years ago, Detroit Public Schools faced a $327 million deficit, an unbalanced budget, and poor academic results. 

Under Roberts, DPS' fiscal and academic condition changed course. The deficit was reduced by $251 million, and DPS produced consecutive balanced budgets with operating surpluses. In terms of academics, the schools saw an increased graduation rate of five percent, with five schools posting graduation rates of 90 percent or higher. The district's MEAP scores improved, too, gaining as much as 11 percent in reading and six percent in mathematics.

Going forward, DPS will work to expand pre-K for all eligible 4-year-olds in Detroit, improve school safety, upgrade technology equipment, and attract more students to the district.