The LAUSD board voted unanimously to select a veteran educator in the system as its new superintendent.


Michelle King, a 30-year veteran, will succeed Ramon Cortines. She will be the first woman and the first African-American to lead the school district. She was previously a respected high school principal, and served as deputy superintendent under both John Deasy and Cortines.


Board members said that she impressed them in their long interviews behind closed doors. They said they appreciated her knowledge of L.A. Unified, which, they concluded, would allow her to tackle the school system’s problems without delay.


The board will eventually have to confront Eli Broad’s effort to take control of half the children in the district by opening 260 charter schools.


The big showdown will come in the school board elections in 2017, when the billionaires can be counted on to pour millions into school board races in an effort to gain control of the board.


In the meanwhile, Michelle King will have her hands full trying to steady the district after years of disruption, budget crises, and declining enrollments.