As Minneapolis Public Schools open its doors to another school year Monday morning, staff, faculty, students and community members are mourning the loss of the district's Board of Education director, Hussein Samatar.
It is with great sadness that I share with you that Board of Education Director Hussein Samatar passed away today, Aug. 25, after a courageous battle with leukemia. He is survived by his wife, Ubah, and four children.
In 2010, Hussein became the first Somali-American ever elected to public office in Minnesota when he won his school board seat. He served on the audit, finance and teaching and learning committees.
Hussein was a passionate leader, a committed public servant, a dedicated collaborator and a valued friend. A native of Somalia, he provided a strong voice for all MPS students, especially immigrant students and children of immigrant parents. During his tenure, MPS began collecting academic results for English learners. As a result, academic data and information are now available in four languages: English, Somali, Spanish and Hmong.
Funeral services will take place tomorrow, Aug. 26, at 1 p.m. at Burnsville Masjid, 1351 Riverwood Dr., Burnsville, MN 55337. Minneapolis Public Schools and AchieveMpls are working together to establish a fund for the Samatar family.
Please join me in offering condolences to Hussein’s family, friends and colleagues.
Bernadeia H. Johnson, Ed.D. Superintendent of Schools