IPS superintendent discusses plans for district ahead of his departure

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - As the leader of Indianapolis Public Schools prepares to move to Washington D.C. for a new job, the board of commissioners must begin the process of selecting an interim superintendent.

On Monday, the mayor of Washington D.C. announced Lewis Ferebee was chosen to lead the school district beginning January 31. Ferebee has been superintendent of IPS since 2013.

" I am very proud that we have significantly advanced opportunities for students, particularly students in poverty," Ferebee said about his time in Indianapolis.

The news of Ferebee's pending relocation comes less than a month after voters approved a $270 million property tax hike to give IPS additional funds for teacher raises and improve school security.

"I am personally invested and committed to ensuring that happens while I am here," Ferebee said about the changes to teacher compensation. "We are in those discussions as we speak."

The board of commissioners president tells FOX59 they hope to vote on a collective bargaining agreement this month.

"Those are commitments we made as a school system," said Michael O'Connor, board of commissioners president. "We'll make sure that money is spent on increasing teacher and principal pay and in the classroom."

The focus must now also be on finding a replacement for the superintendent. Board members say Ferebee notified them of the talks with D.C. over the weekend.

"These things happen really quickly," Ferebee said. "This is not a one person show. This is a collective responsibility between the administration and the board of commissioners. The core nucleus of that leadership will continue to remain in place."

The board of commissioners is set to meet Wednesday evening. This will be their first chance to discuss how they will select an interim superintendent.

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