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New Superintendent Picked to Lead Harlem's School District 5

HARLEM — A new school superintendent will take the helm of Harlem’s District 5 this summer, the Department of Education announced.

Danika Rux, who currently oversees the partnership between Brooklyn's District 23 with charter network Uncommon Schools, will officially replace Gale Reeves on July 1.

Reeves, who has been in the position since 2005, chose to retire after a decades-long career in the department, officials said. She said it was “an honor to work with students, families, and educators” in the district.

DOE Chancellor Carmen Fariña praised Reeves' work “to foster equity and excellence across District 5’s schools.”

Rux started her career as a speech therapist and classroom teacher at Brooklyn’s P.S. 307 from 1995 to 2004 before moving to Georgia for a two-year stint as a literacy coach and data specialist, the DOE said.

She was also the founding principal of Young Scholars’ Academy for Discovery and Exploration in Bedford-Stuyvesant for five years, as well as holding other leadership positions in the department.

"I am excited to partner with families, educators, and the entire District 5 community to expand opportunity for all of our students," Rux said. "In the coming months, I will be meeting with members of this great community to determine how we can work collaboratively to drive progress, and how I can best serve and support them.”

Fariña called Rux an “innovative and committed educator” and said she looks “forward to working alongside her as we provide all of Harlem’s students with high-quality options that put them on the path to college and careers.”

Reeves’ departure earned praise from Sanayi Beckles-Canton, the president of District 5’s Community Education Council, who has been pushing for her ouster.

Beckles-Canton, who was recently re-elected as president of the council, has criticized the department and Reeves for equity issues among the schools in the district and said “there was no accountability and transparency” with Reeves holding the reins.

“She was not there to support families and children. She was there to support the status quo of the DOE,” Beckles-Canton said. “We’re excited that change is coming but we just hope it’s good change.”

Reeves did not immediately respond to a request for comment.