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Carol Johnson and Boston

I've spent the last few months working on a profile of Carol Johnson, who for nearly six years has been superintendent of the public schools in Boston. All I can say about the job of running a large urban school system is, I had no idea! It's brutally complex, fast-moving, and all-consuming -- and that's before you even start tackling things like improving school quality, chipping away at the "achievement gap" that separates black and Latino students as a whole from white and Asian students, or trying to meet the challenge that good city charter schools present.

The profile just went up online. And in one of those minor nightmares that monthly magazine writers sometimes face, after the story was done but before it was published, her husband died and she decided to step down. She was kind enough to give me a head's up before the article actually went to press. Here's the interview I did with her about her resignation.