Updated 2 p.m.

Earlier this morning, Michelle Rhee released a statement on the suspicious death of Brian Betts, principal of Shaw @ Garnet-Patterson MS. He was found dead in his Silver Spring home. MOCO police say Betts appears to be the victim of a homicide.

Read Rhee’s statement as well as Councilmember Jack Evans’ statementin full after the jump


“The unexpected death of Brian Betts is unspeakably tragic for his family, for the Shaw Middle School community, and for all of DC Public Schools.

Brian Betts had the courage to take on the leadership of a struggling, underachieving DCPS school. He came in the 2008-2009 school year and he brought enthusiasm, love and high expectations for the 300 students at Shaw Middle School at Garnet-Patterson.

He was an inspirational leader for the teachers and for the students, and that leadership was bringing results. He knew what the children under his care were capable of, and he was determined to show them how to get there.

Brian Betts’ death is an incredible loss of a young and dedicated school leader. I considered him a colleague and friend, and my own sense of loss is deep.

I want to extend my deepest sympathies to Brian’s family, and to the family he has built at Shaw.”

Councilmember Jack Evans‘ press release:

“Councilmember Jack Evans expresses his deepest sympathies to the family, friends, and students of Shaw Middle School at Garnet-Patterson principal Brian Betts.

‘Brian was nothing less than a superstar to the students at Shaw Middle School,’ Evans said. ‘He took a failing school and turned it around to the point where his students didn’t want to leave. He will be missed terribly.'”