Angela Chapman

Chapman, who earned a master's degree from AU, named superintendent of Columbus City Schools

Published on June 16, 2023
Ashland University

Ashland University allowed Angela Chapman to take graduate courses while still working full time as an elementary teacher early in her education career.

“My school district at the time, Cleveland Heights-University Heights, had a partnership with Ashland University,” said Chapman, who earned her master’s degree in curriculum and instruction in 2000 after two years of AU classes. “The partnership provided extension and outreach courses in our district after school.

“I was in a cohort with my peers who were working on their master’s degrees at the same time,” added Chapman, who earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from the University of Akron. “The schedule was flexible and allowed us to learn and grow together. The flexibility was priceless for me.”

Since her AU experience, Chapman has worked in several administrative positions and earned a doctorate degree in education from Tennessee State University. In May, she started her most recent one as superintendent of Columbus City Schools. Actually, Chapman began the position in December 2022 on an interim basis after the previous superintendent announced that she would retire at the end of the school year. 

According to a report from Columbus news station, NBC4, Chapman was selected through a $250,000 search among 31 applications. Before becoming the interim superintendent, she was the district’s chief of Transformation and Leadership. She also traveled overseas for two teacher development programs to Japan (as a Fulbright Scholar) and Hungary (through a grant from the Ohio Department of Education).

“Columbus City Schools is extremely fortunate to have an individual with the skills, experience and vision of Dr. Chapman to serve as our next superintendent,” Christina Vera, vice president of the Board of Education and co-leader of the search process, was quoted as saying on the Columbus City Schools’ website. “Dr. Chapman exhibits the character and determination needed to uplift the great work of Columbus City Schools while addressing the challenges of the state’s largest school district and ensuring the best academic and personal outcomes for our students.”

Before coming to Columbus City Schools in 2019, Chapman spent five years in the District of Columbia Public Schools as an instructional superintendent and interim chief of elementary, managing 78 elementary schools.

Previous administrative positions were in the Massillon City Schools (director of curriculum), Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools (a principal), Euclid City Schools (an assistant principal) and where she began her career in Cleveland Heights-University Heights School District (a principal).

Chapman, who is the parent of a rising second-grader in Columbus City Schools, said she is looking forward to working collaboratively with the Columbus community to reach and exceed district goals.

“I am grateful for the support of the entire Columbus community,” Chapman said. “This includes staff, students, parents and community leaders. I have appreciated my school visits where I get to visit classrooms and check in with teachers and school-based staff on a regular basis.

“I have met with various community groups, faith-based leaders, nonprofits, parents and students,” she added. “Connecting with our community is really important to me, and I will always prioritize these conversations.”

All of her education experiences to date, including her experience with AU, have prepared Chapman for her new job, she said.

Ashland University’s Master of Education program was beneficial for Chapman for teaching her the qualities of an effective leader, for its flexibility and for the opportunity it provided her, she said.

“The program was flexible and offered opportunities for working professionals to earn their degree without having to sacrifice or separate from their current role,” Chapman said.