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Boston Taps New Schools Chief

The Boston School Committee votes Tuesday on the woman likely to be the city's next Superintendent. Dr. Carol Johnson will come from Memphis, where she oversees a school system that's mostly African American and more than twice the size of Boston's district.

Johnson was not Boston's first choice but entered the running after Manuel Rivera accepted the post then withdrew in January. Johnson's resume includes a four-year stint as Superintendent in Memphis and six years in Minneapolis.

She has won praise for getting 100 troubled Memphis schools off the 'No Child Left Behind' warning list. Her most controversial initiative banned corporal punishment, especially spanking students with a paddle.

The President of the Boston Teachers' Union acknowledges differences between the North and South, but Richard Stutman says he's clear on what teachers here want from their new chief, "We want a commitment from the Superintendent to listen to teachers, to respect teachers, and to pay attention to what teachers want because we actually do most of the work and we expect somebody to honor that.

Carol Johnson visits Boston this week and, if approved, she'll start her new job in August or September.

TUNE INTO MORNING EDITION ON MONDAY FOR MORE COVERAGE AND ANALYSIS OF THIS STORY.

This program aired on June 17, 2007. The audio for this program is not available.

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