Arlene Ackerman, Ed. D, died Saturday at the age of 66 of cancer.
Ackerman became superintendent of the Philadelphia Public Schools District in 2008.
During her tenor as superintendent half of all children in the school district met standards on state exams, which was a first since the enactment of No Child Left Behind laws.
She also developed Imagine 2014, a five-year plan to secure more resources for needy schools.
Superintendent William Hite released this statement on the passing of Arlene Ackerman:
“On behalf of The School District of Philadelphia, I would like to extend my deepest sympathies to the family of Dr. Arlene Ackerman and all who loved her. Dr. Ackerman devoted her life to children and public education, and in doing so, encouraged countless other individuals to commit their lives to teaching, learning and leading. For that, we are grateful. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family, friends and colleagues.”