Gov. John Carney appointed a former State Teacher of the Year and a rising high school senior to serve on the State Board of Education.
Lea Wainwright, Delaware’s 2014 State Teacher of the Year, and Dorcas Olatunji, a Charter School of Wilmington student, will serve on the board until July 1, 2020.
“Educators and Delaware students should always have a seat at the table when we make big decisions that affect schools in our state,” said Carney. “That’s why I am pleased to announce these two appointments to the State Board of Education. Lea and Dorcas will bring valuable experience and perspective to the board, and I want to thank both for their willingness to serve.”
The new non-voting seats were approved by the Delaware General Assembly in 2018 with the passage of House Bill 455. Beginning this year, the governor will annually appoint to the board an 11th or 12th grade student and a former State Teacher of the Year who also is a current educator.
Wainwright is a French teacher at Appoquinimink School District’s Everett Meredith Middle School. She earned her undergraduate degree in French from the University of Delaware. She earned a Masters of Education in educational technology and a Doctor of Education in leadership and innovation from Wilmington University.
Olatunji has volunteering and extracurricular experience, including involvement in the YMCA National Advocacy Program and Youth in Government, in which she served as a YIG Youth Leadership Committee member. Among other work, she helped develop a carpool app to help youth find rides to volunteering and activities. She also spearheaded the “Prejudgment Project” to “find ways to turn inevitable negative first impressions into positive ways that would bring people together.”
Olatunji was selected from a competitive and diverse pool of applicants representing all counties in the state as well as traditional, vocational-technical and charter schools.
“We are excited to welcome Dorcas Olatunji and Lea Wainwright to the State Board of Education. Both members will provide a valuable perspective on policies and programs impacting students and educators and we look forward to their contributions,” said Whitney Sweeney, president of the State Board of Education.
The board’s regular monthly meetings are open to the public, typically scheduled for the third Thursday of the month. The board rotates its meetings to be held in all counties.