Jerry Weast, a veteran of education leadership, including 35 years as a superintendent of schools, has amassed a record of results. Leading school districts in five states, Weast has demonstrated his commitment to ensuring all students graduate prepared and inspired for success in college and careers. Weast is widely respected for his expertise in crafting coherent strategies to sequence change efforts and advises and collaborates with foundations and school district leaders to improve the quality of public education across the United States.
Weast led Montgomery County Public Schools(MCPS) to achieve both the highest graduation rate among the nation’s largest school districts for four consecutive years and the highest academic performance ever in MCPS as the non-English-speaking student population more than doubled and enrollment tipped toward low socioeconomic demographics. U.S. News and World Report found that MCPS high schools comprise about three percent of the nation’s top high schools for STEM education (Classes of 2009, 2010, and 2011). During Weast’s tenure, MCPS received the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award for management excellence in 2010 and was a 2010 finalist for the Broad Prize in Urban Education.
Weast has received numerous awards and honors, including the Educator of the Year Award from the Schott Foundation for Public Education in 2011 and the American Educational Research Association’s 2012 Distinguished Public Service Award.
Weast authored a chapter on the achievement gap in a book, Improving the Odds for America’s Children, dedicated to Marian Wright Edelman’s 40 years at the helm of the Children’s Defense Fund (2014). His groundbreaking approaches to improving public education are the subjects of case studies by the Harvard Business School, The Pew Foundation, the Foundation for Child Development, the Panasonic Foundation, and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching; and of the book Leading for Equity (Harvard Education Press, 2009). Analyses of his successful leadership are featured in several books: Improbable Scholars: The Rebirth of a Great American School System and a Strategy for America’s Schools (Kirp, 2013); Team Turnarounds (Frontiera and Leidl, 2012) and Respect (Kwalwasser, 2012) – and the early childhood education initiatives Dr. Weast led in Montgomery County are discussed in the book Building Blocks, (Maerhoff, 2006).
Weast serves on a number of boards and advisory groups, including the Committee for Economic Development, the National Education Association Foundation Senior Fellows Advisory Group, the board of directors of Editorial Projects in Education, the Opportunity to Learn advisory board (Schott Foundation), the advisory board to the P3 Executive Leadership Institute (University of Washington), and the advisory board of America Achieves. Weast is founder and president of the Partnership for Deliberate Excellence, LLC, through which he works with school districts.