On May 27, the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents (M.A.S.S.) bestowed its 2021 Distinguished Service Award to Senator Jason Lewis. This award is given annually to one person who has made significant contributions to public education in Massachusetts. Senator Lewis represents the residents of the Fifth Middlesex District in the Massachusetts Senate, which includes the cities and towns of Malden, Melrose, Reading, Stoneham, Wakefield, and parts of Winchester. He currently serves as the Senate Chair of the Joint Committee on Education.
“As the leaders of our local public school districts, superintendents have a unique and critical role to play in fostering excellent and equitable educational experiences for all students and families,” said Senator Jason Lewis. “I am very grateful for the recognition of this distinguished group of educators and administrators and I look forward to our continued work alongside classroom teachers, school administrators, parents and families, community organizations, and most of all, students, to make sure that Massachusetts public education continues to serve as a national model of excellence.”
Senator Lewis has long championed educational equity and led the effort to pass the Student Opportunity Act in 2019, landmark legislation to ensure that every child in Massachusetts has equal access to a high-quality public education.
“The Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents acknowledges one person every year to receive the M.A.S.S. Distinguished Service Award. We are pleased and proud to present the 2021 Distinguished Service Award to Senator Jason Lewis,” said Dr. Tom Scott, Executive Director of M.A.S.S. “Senator Lewis has been an advocate for high quality public education for all students. He has demonstrated to school superintendents throughout the Commonwealth, through his words and actions, an example of advocacy that supports our mutual interest to provide the very best opportunities for our children.”
As Senate Chair of the Joint Committee on Education, Senator Lewis has prioritized policy areas such as equitable school funding, access to high-quality and affordable early education and care, and educator workforce development and diversity.
“Senator Lewis has allowed the educational leaders in the Commonwealth an opportunity to share their collective voice,” said M.A.S.S. President Dr. Robert Baldwin, who also serves as the Superintendent of the Fairhaven Public Schools. “On many occasions he has had us in the room as part of the decision-making process. Most impressive, he has followed through by producing results for the greater good on behalf of our students.”
Dr. Baldwin presented the Distinguished Service Award to Senator Lewis during the organization’s Virtual Spring Meeting. Baldwin cited the senator’s efforts to ensure strong fiscal support of public schools and education policy supports Massachusetts public school students, staff, and districts. Baldwin also acknowledged Lewis’s role in hearing the concerns and responding to the needs of public school stakeholders throughout the COVID-19 public health crisis.