Secretary of Education Mark Murphy directs the administration and operation of the Delaware Department of Education. Nominated by Gov. Jack Markell in April 2012, his focus is on ensuring children and educators are positively impacted when developing policy and implementing state and federal initiatives. He also leads support to the state’s districts and charter schools, ensuring administrators and teachers are receiving the help they need to drive student achievement.
A former teacher and principal, he understands the challenges faced by educators in Delaware's districts and charter schools and the importance of working with local leadership, including on the implementation of Delaware’s top federally-ranked Race to the Top plan. He also values collaborations with the state's elected leaders, business community and nonprofits that support our students and educators.
Prior to his appointment, Murphy served as executive director of the nonprofit Vision Network in Delaware, leading school improvement efforts with staff, consultants and educators at more than two dozen schools across the state. His work aimed to drive dramatic gains in student achievement by focusing on the strongest levers while empowering school leaders to work together to confront and solve their biggest challenges. He also targeted support at the instructional leadership team level of each school, ensuring that leadership capacity is built throughout the school and achievement gains are sustained.
Before joining Vision Network, Murphy was executive director of leadership development at New Leaders for New Schools. There, he designed and implemented cutting-edge school leadership standards and assessments. He also led the successful development of more than 200 school principals across 10 cities. Prior to this role, Murphy designed, implemented and led the Data-Driven Instruction Initiative for New Leaders.
Prior to his nonprofit education leadership work, Murphy was a physical education teacher, elementary teacher, assistant principal and principal. His work as a principal was targeted at driving high achievement gains for every student and eliminating the achievement gap in his school. During his years as a principal, he led a turnaround effort in a troubled and failing district school in Maryland, driving more than 30-point gains in both literacy and math over the course of four years.
Murphy earned a Bachelor of Science in physical education from the State University of New York and a Master of Education in school leadership from the College of Notre Dame of Maryland.
He and his wife, Erika, live in Wilmington with their two children, who attend Delaware public schools.
Phone: (302) 735-4000
Fax: (302) 739-4654