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Jean-Claude Brizard, President, UpSpring Education Group

Jean-Claude is president of UpSpring Education Group, a network of highly experienced education practitioners and not-for-profit leaders who work to develop proof points in education and whose goal is to support the strategic, instructional, and operational work of education organizations across the United States and abroad.

He is the former chief executive of Chicago Public Schools. Prior to his appointment in Chicago, he was superintendent of schools for the Rochester City (NY) School District. Under Jean-Claude’s leadership, both the Chicago Public Schools and the Rochester City School District saw substantial improvements in student performance.

Jean-Claude introduced a comprehensive change agenda across the Chicago Public Schools, including closing a significant budget gap of more than $1.3 billion over two fiscal years while preserving core reforms and investing in classrooms. He developed a new framework for teaching, and the system saw record increases in student achievement, graduation rates, and on college-readiness benchmarks.

His experience also includes a 21-year career as an educator and administrator with the New York City Department of Education. He served as a regional superintendent, supervising more than 100 schools in the Borough of Brooklyn, and as the system’s executive director for secondary schools. Jean-Claude is a Fellow of the Broad Center, a Fellow of the third class of the Pahara-Aspen Education Fellowship, and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.