Dr. Douglas L. Ragland

Retired Superintendent of Schools



I thought and prayed long and hard about the decision to run for the Birmingham Board of Education District 1 Seat. I came to the conclusion that our school district lacks the leadership to move forward in terms of producing a school system that will make students competitive locally, statewide, nationally, and internationally. I am a lifelong resident of Birmingham and a product of the Birmingham City School System. The current status of the district is unacceptable and unfair to our children, parents, community and stakeholders.

The status of the school system is a hindrance in attracting businesses and a clientele of parents who indeed can promote and show great interest in helping the school system achieve worldwide status. Instead of parents fleeing the district, we should have parents in abundance pursuing the district, thus making us the largest district in the state and not the 4 largest and declining steadily. Instead of having a mediocre graduation rate of 55%, we should greatly exceed the state average of 75% and achieve 100%. Instead of having apathy and low parental involvement, we should have 100% parental involvement in every school in the district. Instead of having financial disarray and a shortage of the minimum one month’s reserves required by law, we should have at least 5 months of operational reserves and improving at a rapid pace.

As Superintendent of Education in two respective school districts in the state of Alabama, I worked collaboratively with the state department of education, elected and appointed school boards, parents, stakeholders, community leaders, politicians, and the like. I successfully accomplished the following in the school systems I served as Superintendent: (1) led a district from deficit spending and state financial intervention to 5 months of operational reserves and release from state intervention, (2) supervised 14 and 25 million dollar budgets successfully, (3) attained 100% highly qualified and professionally certified teachers, (4) facilitated educational summits in keeping parents and the community informed, and simultaneously created parental and community involvement, (5) increased enrollment in the districts I served, (6) worked successfully with stakeholders in providing opportunities for young people in career technical education, higher education, (7) spearheaded and supervised academic and community scholarships in the amounts of 2.8 and 2.0 million dollars respectively,

(8) supervised a graduation rate in the 90 percentile, reduced the dropout rate in one district from 49 to 15%, (9) achieved a very successful career technical education program by having 100% of the programs in Career Tech "Business Industry Certified", (10) achieved AYP District-wide every single year, (11) attained and maintained 2.6 million in grant monies for academics, professional development, innovative and creative extra-curricular activities, (12) successfully initiated and accomplished the first ever accrediting of schools in one district, (13) successfully renewed the accreditation of schools in another school system, (14) supervised 89% and 80% respective rates of students attending higher education in the districts I served, (15) lobbied for and received over $900,000 for the education of students and capital improvements, and (17) led and fostered the passage of a tax referendum for 30 years to keep monies recurring for the education of the students in one district. As a result of these accomplishments minimal disciplinary issues surfaced.

Last but not least, I was blessed to have exemplary evaluatons as Superintendent of Education in the school systems I served.

As a result of these experiences, I believe I am extremely prepared to be a true advocate for children and successful school board member in serving to bring our school system to a level of preparedness where our children will not only compete successfully globally in the 21 century, but be productive citizens in society thus providing a better tomorrow as successful leaders. My vision is for the school district to be a world class district preparing every child to be competitive and productive citizens in society, thus leaving no child, no parent, and no community behind.