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Dr. Janice Jackson

CEO, Chicago Public Schools


Janice K. Jackson, EdD has over  20 years of educational leadership experience in the third largest school district in the country, Chicago Public Schools.   Dr. Janice K. Jackson has been immersed in Chicago Public Schools her entire life. She was a CPS student from Head Start through 12th grade, then began her teaching career at Chicago’s South Shore High School. Since that time, Dr. Jackson has served as a principal, a Network Chief, the Chief Education Officer, and now, as Chief Executive Officer for CPS, the third largest school district in the country.  Jackson has sent the past six years working in senior leadership roles in the CPS.


As CEO of the third largest school district in the country, Dr. Jackson is responsible for setting our district’s collective goals, ensuring that the children of Chicago develop into the thinkers, leaders, and innovators of the future. Dr. Jackson is focused on providing students in every neighborhood of the city with equitable access to high-quality programming and facilities, and she is committed to developing a Pre-K through 14 continuum that is steeped in academic rigor, supports the well-rounded development of the whole child, and provides students with multiple pathways to success.

Dr. Jackson possesses a deep commitment to equity and excellence.  Her driven leadership has resulted in increased student outcomes on a variety of qualitative and quantitative metrics from her time in the classroom throughout her experience as a district leader.  Adept in leading and managing through crisis and dynamic change.  Every level of leadership is marked by consistent increased student outcomes across all racial, ethnic and socio-economic groups and targeted financial support to narrow the opportunity gap between low-income and minority students and their peers.


Dr. Jackson is a progressive, forward-thinking educator who believes in setting the bar high. Her five-year strategic plan for CPS, is model for urban, suburban and rural school districts as it is a comprehensive, research-based roadmap that strengthens the district’s commitments to academic progress, financial stability, and integrity. Above all, the Vision renews the district’s focus on equity. The vision focuses on promoting academic quality, building stakeholder trust and integrity, and achieving fiscal stability, and is a carefully crafted plan for guiding work across the District.  As a lifelong educator, Dr. Jackson is committed to providing all schools with a clear framework for excellence. This includes high-quality curricular options aimed at minimizing the achievement gap, especially among minority students. The evidence of her success can be seen in rising standardized test scores, especially among English Learners, whose progress led the way to CPS students once again outpacing their peers nationally on the 2016-2017 NWEA exam.


During her tenure as Chief Education Officer in 2015, Dr. Jackson has focused on building excellence, equity and access across the District, especially with regard to CPS high schools. Through a comprehensive High School Strategy, she is raising both the bar and the stakes for these crucial academic years, working to ensure that every student in Chicago has a quality high school option within three miles of their home.


Dr. Jackson was also the driving force behind GoCPS, the District’s first common application for all CPS and charter high schools. Launched in October 2017, this application system has dramatically simplified the high school application process while improving access and equity for all CPS high school students. These combined efforts have propelled CPS students to a record-high graduation rate of 77.3 percent, and Dr. Jackson’s support of a graduation requirement insisting that all students have a solid post-secondary plan is ensuring that Chicago’s youth leave the classroom fully prepared for what comes next.


Dr. Jackson's commitment to public education is a return on the investment from the public institutions from headstart to graduate school that have educated her.  She holds two degrees from Chicago State University and  holds a Master's in Leadership and Administration and a Doctorate in Education in Policy Studies in Urban School Leadership from the University of Illinois at Chicago. In her spare time, Dr. Jackson enjoys spending time with her family, especially her daughter, Tori, and her stepson, Torrence, Jr.


Speaker at Moonshot Conference

Starting on July 22 at 10:30AM CET

Event details


The Future of Education

Moonshot by Aspen CE

Fighting Inequalities

Moonshot Conference USA