Gary M. Ratner

Founder and Executive Director, Citizens for Effective Schools

Gary M. Ratner is CES' founder and Executive Director. He has been a nationally recognized authority on school reform law and policy for more than 30 years. Mr. Ratner is a principal drafter of the Joint Organizational Statement on No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act, the policy statement for overhauling NCLB endorsed by more than 150 national organizations, including NAACP, National School Boards Association, National Council of Churches, NEA and National Parent Teacher Association. Mr. Ratner's calls to action have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Business Week, The Boston Globe and other major publications. His article, "Why the No Child Left Behind Act Needs To be Restructured To Accomplish Its Goals and How To Do It" was featured in the University of the District of Columbia Law Review in March 2007. His law review article, "A New Legal Duty for Urban Public Schools: Effective Education in Basic Skills," published in the Texas Law Review in 1985, is the seminal work that calls for holding urban public schools legally accountable for effectively educating all students. Mr. Ratner won a Presidential Rank Award as a senior executive at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, was a top assistant to the Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare, and was recognized by a Boston Globe editorial as "one of Boston's prized lawyers," who "had more impact on city and state government ... over the past decade [than all but a] few people in or out of the legal community." He graduated from Williams College (Phi Beta Kappa) and Harvard Law School.