Dr. Janice Jackson is a Senior Fellow whose work at Carnegie focuses on equity issues, such as improving high school and college attainment nationwide and ensuring that African American, Latinx, and Indigenous students receive exemplary education and social and emotional support. She is the former CEO of Chicago Public Schools (CPS).
Jackson’s tenure at CPS—the nation’s 3rd largest school district with more than 355,000 students, 38,000 employees, and an annual budget of $7 billion—is most notable for the results the district attained in advancing equitable outcomes for its students. Jackson’s efforts, along with those of Chicago’s dedicated teachers and principals, have propelled CPS students to record-breaking improvements in academic achievement, high school graduation, and post-secondary completion. Education experts across the country regard Chicago as a national leader in improving results for young people at scale.
She began her career within CPS in 1999 as a social studies teacher and debate team coach at South Shore High School. Subsequently, she served as a high school principal, District Network Chief, and Chief Education Officer. Appointed CEO in 2017, she was the first CPS alumna to serve in the position. Jackson holds a B.A. and M.A. from Chicago State University, and an M.A. and Ed.D. from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is also a board member of the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning.