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David Banks To Be Named New York City Schools Chancellor

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- The next leader of New York City schools has been picked.

Thursday, Mayor-Elect Eric Adams will announce David Banks as his choice for the next chancellor of the Department of Education.

As CBS2's Aundrea Cline-Thomas reports, Banks has more than three decades of experience in education and is himself a graduate of New York City's public schools.

He's centered much of his career around reforms and improving the educational outcomes, specifically for students of color.

Banks has been the longtime frontrunner, first reported by CBS2's Marcia Kramer last week, to become the next New York City public schools chancellor.

Banks and Adams' relationship goes way back, highlighted during a virtual town hall with students from Eagle Academy in October 2020.

"He has been a huge, huge supporter to the Eagle Academy since he has been an elected official and even before," Banks said of Adams during the town hall.

In 2004, Banks became the founding principal of Eagle Academy in the Bronx, now a network of six all-boys sixth-through-12th grade schools created to improve educational outcomes of students of color in urban communities.

Now Banks serves as the president and CEO of the school's foundation.

"How do we become really responsive, emotionally intelligent adults? That's what Eagle Academy has continued to produce and that is why I will always be a supporter of this great institution," Adams said during the 2020 town hall.

But as a whole, Adams has been a vocal critic of the city's public school system.

The day after winning the election, he said, "We're getting an inferior product. That just doesn't make sense. That's the height of dysfunctionality."

Banks will succeed current chancellor Meisha Porter, who he mentored.

In a LinkedIn post, he congratulated Porter, who is taking the helm of the Bronx Community Foundation, calling her, "One of the most amazing people I've ever worked with."

The question now becomes if Banks' track record of reform and approach to education touted for the thousands of students at the Eagle Academy can translate to an entire school system of 1 million students.

A glimpse into Banks' priorities can be found in a Daily News op-ed from earlier this year, where he advocated for collaborating with corporations to provide more opportunities to students to not relying so heavily on standardized tests to measure progress.

Meanwhile, managing COVID, class size and addressing the Gifted and Talented Program are among the immediate issues he'll have to tackle.

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