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Director of Diversity and Equity and Inclusion Named at MDE

LANSING – State Superintendent Dr. Michael Rice named a west Michigan school superintendent as the first director of diversity, equity, and inclusion in the Michigan Department of Education (MDE) today.

Rané Garcia, currently the superintendent of the Muskegon Heights Public School Academy System, will begin her new role on August 23.

“We are continuing our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion with this new position at the Michigan Department of Education,” Dr. Rice said. “Rané Garcia brings the personal and professional experience to help strengthen our efforts around diversity, equity, and inclusion, both within the department and within the state. We are very pleased to have her join our team.”

Garcia has been superintendent for the Muskegon Heights Public School Academy System since 2017, following a year as its assistant superintendent. Her 31-year career in public education includes experience as a teacher, principal, and district administrator.

As director of diversity, equity, and inclusion, Garcia will be responsible for developing and supporting internal and external efforts and strategies that foster greater fairness and inclusion in the state’s public schools.

As a first-generation college student and math major at the University of Michigan, Garcia began her career as a teacher building relationships with students and families in a variety of cultures in Michigan, Texas, and Illinois. As a principal, she led her school to a National Blue Ribbon Award by closing achievement gaps. As a superintendent, she has worked to strengthen her school district by improving student achievement, partnering with higher education, substantially improving the teacher retention rate, and stabilizing enrollment.

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