When I think superintendent, I picture Gary Chalmers from “The Simpsons.” Cool is not a term I’d use to describe the typical administrator, so there’s not much competition for the title of Coolest Superintendent.
But Atlanta Public Schools superintendent Dr. Meria Carstarphen apparently isn’t your typical administrator. Over the past week, as prep sports ramp up again, she put on pads to take the field for a Maynard H. Jackson High football practice and sported a swim cap to enter the pool with North Atlanta High’s water polo team.
During football practice, she gave a pep talk to the offensive lineman, and then let her play do the talking against the Jaguars’ defense, corralling a pass in the flat and splitting the D for an unscathed touchdown.
That’s the only opportunity those kids will have to level their superintendent, and instead they let her waltz through without so much as a bump — which might be the smartest play they’ll make all year. I did enjoy the secondary diving for her feet at the end. That was the perfect touch to cap what looked like a good time.
The following day, she joined former U.S. Olympic goalie Genai Kerr at North Atlanta’s water polo practice.
All of which earned Carstarphen the new title of Coolest Superintendent. Step up your game, administrators.