LITTLE ROCK — Arkansas Department of Education Commissioner Johnny Key is pleased to announce that Dr. Ivy Pfeffer has been named deputy commissioner. Pfeffer, the current assistant commissioner for Educator Effectiveness and Licensure, will assume her new role July 1. She replaces Dr. Mark Gotcher, who accepted the superintendent position at the Russellville School District effective July 1.
As deputy commissioner, Pfeffer will collaborate with ADE team members, school district personnel, educators, community members, parents and legislators to transform Arkansas to lead the nation in student-focused education and ensure all Arkansas students have access to excellent educational opportunities where they can achieve their highest potential.
“Since joining the department in 2013, Dr. Pfeffer has built strong relationships with higher education representatives and led efforts to address the declining teacher pipeline and promote education,” Key said. “She initiated a successful campaign to encourage educators to return to the teaching profession and implemented policies to allow teacher residencies and flexible preparation opportunities. Under her leadership, grow-your-own opportunities for high school students have increased. Dr. Pfeffer has focused on opportunities for teacher and principal leadership and led efforts to promote high standards for professionalism. I look forward to her insight and expertise in this new role.”
"I am humbled and honored to continue to work with our team at the Department of Education as we serve students and school districts throughout the state,” Pfeffer said. “Ensuring that all students have the opportunity for success is not some future pipe dream; it is the work of today's educators. I am excited to be a part of these efforts."
Pfeffer joined ADE in 2013 as the director of educator evaluation, where she coordinated the administration of the new teacher and principal evaluation systems. In July 2014 she was named the assistant commissioner for Educator Effectiveness and Licensure. As assistant commissioner, Pfeffer oversaw multiple units and programs including human resources, teacher licensure, teacher and principal evaluation programs, educator ethics investigations and child nutrition.
Prior to joining the ADE team, Pfeffer worked at the Pocahontas School District for almost 18 years. She taught Spanish and English at Pocahontas Junior High School from August 1995 to June 2004 before being named an assistant principal at the high school. She served in that role a year before being selected as principal, a position she held until June 2013. Pfeffer also served as an adjunct English and Spanish instructor for Black River Technical College from August 1995 to May 1997.
Pfeffer earned a Bachelor of Science in Education in Spanish from Arkansas State University at Jonesboro and a Master of Science in Education in Integrated Technology in the Classroom from Walden University in Minneapolis, MN. She completed the Educational Leadership principal certification from ASU in 2006 and a specialist degree in Educational Leadership from ASU in 2012. She holds a superintendent certification. Pfeffer recently completed a Doctor of Education in School Leadership from Arkansas Tech University at Russellville.
Pfeffer is a member of the Arkansas Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development and the Arkansas Association of Educational Administrators.
This is a press release from the Arkansas Department of Education.