Gov. Deal on his recovery district: State would take over 20 schools a year and operate max of 100

 

Gov. Nathan Deal

Gov. Nathan Deal

A joint House and Senate committee listened this afternoon to officials from New Orleans and Tennessee discuss their states’ recovery school districts.

The lawmakers asked good questions of the three speakers. Based on what I heard, it is far likelier Georgia will follow the Tennessee model rather than New Orleans, where Hurricane Katrina created unique and dramatic circumstances.

While the speakers encouraged Georgia to pursue state takeover of persistently failing schools, they also urged caution and local involvement.

In New Orleans, the most successful schools in the state Recovery School District were started by local educators rather than out-of-state charter school operators.

The governor released his bill after the hearing. The bill calls for a constitutional amendment in which voters would decide whether to put the state in the business of seizing control of schools.

After listening to the speakers for two hours, here’s the essence of why they believe schools under state control in New Orleans and Tennessee are making gains with their students: They have the flexibility to break the mold and design programs that match their students and they have the autonomy to hire their own staffs and use funding as they see fit.

Although several lawmakers raised the question, no one explained why, if flexibility and autonomy are the keys to success, Georgia can’t make that happen now without state takeover. Why do we have to create another layer of government and hire a recovery district czar?

Deal has to answer that question before he gets buy-in from skeptical legislators, including some in his own party.

Similar to the Tennessee law, Deal’s legislation states:

The Governor shall appoint a superintendent to serve as the executive officer of the Opportunity School District. The OSD Superintendent shall serve at the pleasure of the Governor and shall have such qualifications and salary as determined by the Governor.

The OSD Superintendent shall be an employee of the office but shall report directly to the Governor. The Opportunity School District shall be authorized to select up to 20 qualifying 51 schools to add to the OSD in any single school year.

The Opportunity School District shall have no more than 100 schools under its supervision at any given time. Selection of up to 20 qualifying schools to add to the OSD in any single school year shall be based on an analysis of performance over the three-year period and other considerations, including geographic clusters of qualifying schools, feeder patterns with multiple eligible schools, availability of qualified partners, and community engagement and support.

The school selection process shall allow for parent and community input but the but the final selection shall be in the sole discretion of the OSD Superintendent in determining  which schools are transferred.

Here is the official statement from the governor’s office:

Gov. Nathan Deal’s Senate floor leader Butch Miller, R-Gainesville, today introduced legislation to create an Opportunity School District that will allow the state to temporarily step in to assist chronically failing schools, giving students and parents hope for a better future.

“While Georgia boasts many schools that achieve academic excellence every year, we still have too many schools where students have little hope of attaining the skills they need to succeed in the workforce or in higher education,” said Deal. “We have a moral duty to do everything we can to help these children. Failing schools keep the cycle of poverty spinning from one generation to the next. Education provides the only chance for breaking that cycle. When we talk about helping failing schools, we’re talking about rescuing children. I stand firm on the principle that every child can learn, and I stand equally firm in the belief that the status quo isn’t working.”

In the governor’s proposal, persistently failing schools are defined as those scoring below 60 on the Georgia Department of Education’s accountability measure, the College and Career Performance Index (CCRPI), for three consecutive years.

The Opportunity School District would take in no more than 20 schools per year, meaning it would govern no more than 100 at any given time. Schools would stay in the district for no less than five years but no more than 10 years.

“I would like nothing more than for the need for the Opportunity School District to decline every year; that would show our reforms are working,” Deal said. “But everyone – regardless of where they stand on this issue – can agree that today there is a need. We know from other states such as Louisiana and Tennessee that these programs can produce positive results for students and communities.

“Educational opportunity opens the door to the American dream. We can’t guarantee that every child will achieve, but we must do everything in our power to make sure they at least get the chance.”

Creating the Opportunity School District requires a constitutional amendment. Deal this session will work with legislators to put the amendment on the 2016 ballot and to pass enabling legislation that will govern how the district operates.

Reader Comments 0

66 comments
NGateacher
NGateacher

The state "taking over" "failing" public schools assumes that the state can do something different  and better with that school's students.  Well, it can't, because of current legislation that limits what schools are allowed to do.  There are very few "failing" schools( if we define "failing" in terms of  standardized  tests) because of teachers or administrators.  Because of strict certification and curriculum  requirements, employees and  standards taught are virtually the same quality everywhere.   No, what makes "failing" schools are almost universally socioeconomic characteristics of the populace it serves.  In poverty communities, a high percentage of students start out a year or two behind middle class peers academically, and suffer a host of other nonacademic problems.  If the state is truly serious about improving failing schools, it must  address the socioeconomic reasons in an intelligent and serious manner.   This might include having school-based nurses and social workers.  In addition the state could 1) adopt universal pre-K, 2) mandate caretaker involvement in schools, 3) provide free aftercare and intensive tutoring labs, 4) legislate strict attendance and disciplinary measures that include expulsion if the education of other students is compromised ; 5) at the high school level broaden the curriculum to offer multiple diploma types.  Not every student needs 4 courses in each of the "core" areas to be successful.  In fact, the reason many students act out is due to frustration with these courses that continually poke at their weaknesses and not embrace their strengths and interests.

ThisIs MyName
ThisIs MyName

Alright, so he's consolidating a bunch of schools...



Now, what is he deciding to do about the part where students are failing?

Bernie31
Bernie31

@ThisIs MyName - He does not care about DAT! Let em all go on welfare,medicaid an foodstamps! they ain't gonna amount to nothing anyway is his Thinking and those of his supporters. Until one Night their Door is Kicked in and a voice in the darkness says..."YOU know what we Want!"

Then there is always that familiar chorus and song of "WHY?"

Besides it keeps Republicans in Office and they have good talking points to campaign on.

DSW2
DSW2

A technicality regarding the proposal to create the Opportunity School District >> Can the governor start a new school district? Isn't that against the state Constitution? 

Bernie31
Bernie31

What is the matter MO? Yer cannot find a more current Photo of the mean ole COOT Nathan? That one is his class photo from the First Grade.

I get it...he might frighten the Kids.....They are already skerred of Him. They know he HATES CHLDREN.

One Class said he looks mean and smells funny, like a nursing home. I asked why a nursing home? One little girl raised her hand, stood up and said " Her dad says when Nathan leaves office, A Nursing Home is where he is going to Live. Because he is old as Dirt."

Children...will say the darndest things.....

class80olddog
class80olddog

The one thing that traditional public schools can't do that charter schools can is require an application that actually shows that a parent CARES. 


Thank GOD that charters can.

DrMonicaHenson
DrMonicaHenson

@class80olddog Actually, district public schools also require new families to fill out enrollment paperwork, which is what a charter school application actually is. Enrollment papers, whether district or charter, encompass free/reduced lunch eligibility forms, proof of residence in the district, proof of immunizations or claim of religious exemption, emergency contact information, etc., 

SoGAVet
SoGAVet

Yes, we're going to MAKE parents care!!!  And if they don't?!?  We'll...we'll...we'll kick their smarmy kid to the curb.  Let that kid go to a failing school that doesn't make unenforceable demands on it's parents!

Give me a break.

DrMonicaHenson
DrMonicaHenson

@SoGAVet Charter schools cannot enforce parental compacts any more than a district school can. Students cannot be expelled from any public school, district or charter, for their parents' actions or failures to act. No "parental contract" is enforceable under the law. #CharterSchoolMyth #DefenderOfTheStatusQuo

HollyJones
HollyJones

Here's my question- the same one I have posed to charter supporters and to which I have never received an answer- if flexibility and innovation and all these  buzzwords that get thrown about are so good for charters, or RSDs, then why can't we make those options available to ALL schools? 

DrMonicaHenson
DrMonicaHenson

@HollyJones Every single waiver that charter schools are granted is equally available to local school districts. They simply choose not to request most of them. Districts request and are granted waivers under Title 20, the state law governing public education in grades K-12, ALL THE TIME. Read the minutes of any State Board of Education meeting to see the waiver requests and grants made to local school districts every month. 

khroyal
khroyal

@HollyJones School districts can make those options available to all schools.  Recovery School Districts, Opportunity School Districts, Achievement Zones are all fake reform.  I live in New Orleans and I know from watching this mess of a Recovery School District for the last 9 years that this is not real reform.  I used to serve on the Recovery School District Advisory Council.  It was not long before I realized that there was no magic coming to transform our schools.  After bring 107 schools scoring below the state average into the recovery school district in 2005, as of 2014 only 4 were above the state average.  There's been a lot of playing around with how we measure schools, changing of cut scores for passing tests, changing  the school performance score scale and changing how those school performance scores are computed to give the illusion that the RSD in Louisiana has been successful.  However, when you use the exact same definition for a failing school that was applied to our public schools in New Orleans, and apply that to the 2014 performance of the schools that were a part of the RSD, you get 4(four)  Only 4 schools are above the state average.  So get ready Georgia for a grand hoax on your poorest kids.  Get ready to see your communities destroyed. Get ready to see mass unemployment of teachers.  Good Luck from NOLA.

RexDogma
RexDogma

Deal speaks out of both side of his mouth.  Local control and state takeover.  Which is it.  He is a joke.

BCW1
BCW1

One of the biggest reforms needs to take place outside the school. Yes there are schools that need assistance and there are teachers that do not need to be in the profession. But the partnership with parents is not there as well in those communities. IT TAKES A COMMUNITY TO RAISE A CHILD!!! Remember when someone would come up to you and say, I know your momma and daddy, you better behave? Or if a teacher called a parent, they were not questioned as to what happened?

dcdcdc
dcdcdc

Just read a number of the comments from posters below, and it makes it clear why Deal didn't include current "eduacracy members"  on his board.  This is without a doubt the biggest bunch of whiners, do nothings, complainers, and dart throwers I've ever seen. 


I can just see his team sitting around and reading the crap on this blog - and realizing what a complete bunch of losers he would end up with by adding anyone like this to his board.  It would be full of 1) we can't do anything, because our students and their parents suck, 2) The gov and his staff suck, 3) our job is too hard, 4) We don't spend enough money., 5) Evil Corporations are trying to such our money dry, 6) etc etc.


Yep...those ideas would really help us fix our problems.  Whiners who have no innovative ideas are always SO helpful to a group trying to actually fix things.....wow.

sneakpeakintoeducation
sneakpeakintoeducation

@dcdcdc


I am probably one of the "whiners" you refer to. Yes, we do know what works and we know what doesn't. It's no surprise. The failed reforms, one of which is the RSD, has been shown to be a disaster for many, many students. No whining, just facts. We know that the students who do poorly on tests or in school are those in poverty. We cannot educate ourselves out of poverty but we can start by providing wrap-around services to help those children succeed by having access to adequate healthcare, a warm meal in their stomach, and a suitableand safe place to lie their head at night. This "experiment" was tried and has succeeded in Finland so we DO know what works and what doesn't. Unfortunately, our governor wishes to take us down the path of failure rather than success. I should say failure for the children but success for the private charter companies who will make billions off this exercise of futility.

OriginalProf
OriginalProf

@dcdcdc 

I just want to observe that you too are one of those who "[sit] around and [read] the crap on this blog," and regularly contribute to it.  So what are you saying here about yourself??

khroyal
khroyal

@sneakpeakintoeducation @dcdcdc I live in New Orleans and I know from watching this mess of a Recovery School District for the last 9 years that this is not real reform.  I used to serve on the Recovery School District Advisory Council.  It was not long before I realized that there was no magic coming to transform our schools.  After bring 107 schools scoring below the state average into the recovery school district in 2005, as of 2014 only 4 were above the state average.  There's been a lot of playing around with how we measure schools, changing of cut scores for passing tests, changing  the school performance score scale and changing how those school performance scores are computed to give the illusion that the RSD in Louisiana has been successful.  However, when you use the exact same definition for a failing school that was applied to our public schools in New Orleans, and apply that to the 2014 performance of the schools that were a part of the RSD, you get 4(four)  Only 4 schools are above the state average.  So get ready Georgia for a grand hoax on your poorest kids.  Get ready to see your communities destroyed. Get ready to see mass unemployment of teachers.  Good Luck from NOLA.

sneakpeakintoeducation
sneakpeakintoeducation

@khroyal @sneakpeakintoeducation @dcdcdc


@KHROYAL


thank you so much for taking the time to post this confirmation about what is happening in the schools in NO, and from inside the trenches. Everyone who thinks the RSD is a good idea needs a wake-up call. No success for the students, only for the privateers.


dcdcdc
dcdcdc

A Key principle will be that the funding for these schools leaves the local school system as well.  Only the threat of loss of money will actually get the attention of the local Admin, and get them to focus on actually fixing the issue - rather than just complaining about how awful their students and parents are, while they hire their relatives and cronies for more BS admin jobs, that suck up funding and bring nothing of value to the front line teachers

ATLPeach
ATLPeach

Exactly what is a failing school?  I'm sure my school would be considered failing due to test scores.  However test scores don't show all the hard work that is being done on a daily basis. It doesn't show the behavior of students that is so out of control that even in this economy, we have a very high turnover rate of teachers.  Nor does it show how often teachers are told that behavior problems are a result of us not engaging students. Are the number of students in SST even considered?  We have nearly 1/4 of our student body in the SST process.  They're just in the process.  No real work is being done to help these kids.  There is no parent accountability.  Teachers are now keeping records on students to prove a kid is a problem kid, although that student may have already been physically agressive toward their peers and teachers.  


I am so sick of hearing how schools are failing kids.  Politicians and administrators are failing kids.  They are the decision makers.  They are making horrible decisions and ignoring the obvious.  Until student discipline is under control, test scores will continue to be low.  Address the real problems, then real change will come about.  

td1234
td1234

@ATLPeach In the real world it does not matter how hard you work but what are the final results. The school system was established to make good workers for companies. 

MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

@td1234 


Your view of why the "school system was established" is only partially correct, at best.  Thomas Jefferson wrote that there was a need for a well-educated American populace, through public education, so that all classes in American society could assume responsibility for keeping our Democratic-Republic, "of the people," alive over the centuries.  He, also, stated that an educated populace would be able to see into the machinations of the wealthy/powerful elite regarding how they would use "the people" for their own interests.  He wanted an aware, educated American public in order to better sustain our democratic Republic.

ATLPeach
ATLPeach

@td1234 


I work in the real world.  The world where kids come to school hungry because there's no food at home.  The world where kids don't have coats in the winter, have too small shoes with holes, are dirty, have not been taught to respect any adult, were born addicted to drugs and alcohol, and even more.  In this real world, the idea that a school is failing when we're making small improvements is ridiculous.  There is no organization that can take over and create change without changing the obvious.  The reality is children will continue to suffer at the hands of politicians.  But let's continue to blame teachers for failing schools.  Those that really have no voice.  

Wascatlady
Wascatlady

Why do we need another group overseeing education, another education czar?


Because Deal still has a few family members who need a good job.

Ralph-43
Ralph-43

Nathan Deal involved in public education?  This is a person charged repeatedly with unethical conduct and shady dealings.  The first step should be an accurate assessment of the reason these schools are failing - as noted by the educated and certified teachers commenting in this blog.  Speak English?  Have transportation to the school?  Abused at home?  Food and healthcare provided?  Learning materials up to date?  Orderly conduct maintained in the school?  Removal or corrective control of the disruptive students?  School structure in repair?  Put these tax-payer salaried legislators to work analyzing the problem by receiving in-put from those on the front lines and DO NOT give Nathan Deal or his dishonest cronies any additional authority over our children.  I think most of us already suspect what the problems are - and many of them were created or fostered by Deal-style selfish politics. 

MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

@Ralph-43


I agree with your thoughts except for your thoughts expressed about Gov. Deal's intent.  I believe Gov. Deal is sincere about wanting to improve school performance in Georgia; I just believe that his ideas will ultimately hurt, not help, public education in this state. (Btw, Gov. Deal's wife, who is a nice lady whom I have met, was a teacher who is committed to educational improvement in Georgia.)

SGeorgia_Teacher
SGeorgia_Teacher

Hooray!


I welcome Atlanta to come to S. Georgia and "repair" failing schools!  I welcome the opportunity for someone to be in the trenches, to see migrant students and other hard to reach students.  My school's largest department is Special Needs.  I would LOVE to see what they can do with that.


Several years back, the coordinator for the state GHSGT Science test hosted a panel of teachers and their questions.  The "test" was piloted in several affluent, well-performing schools.  Our teachers asked questions like:


Only 35 percent of our school is college bound.  How is this fair against schools with 90+ percent college bound?

Did you choose any rural districts to pilot the test?  Why not?


The coordinator got angry and exasperated, leaving without answering these questions.


So, I am welcoming the state to come and show my colleagues how to teach better.

Wascatlady
Wascatlady

@SGeorgia_Teacher Sort of like all those medical studies that INCLUDED ONLY MEN!  And then extrapolate to ALL people?

OriginalProf
OriginalProf

@SGeorgia_Teacher 

I think I read in the AJC that the schools to be taken over would not be in the rural areas, but the cities.  Once again, Georgia's poorer, rural areas will  get short shrift from the state.

eulb
eulb

"Although several lawmakers raised the question, no one explained why, if flexibility and autonomy are the keys to success, Georgia can’t make that happen now without state takeover. Why do we have to create another layer of government and hire a recovery district czar?"


Maureen, you nailed it.  Thank you.


If flexibility and autonomy are the keys to a successful school, who is blocking that autonomy? It's not that specific school's principal.  Its the district level superintendent and administrators.  So, if state takeover really is the right remedy, the takeover target should be the school district's administration.  


It will do no good and will probably make things worse if the state threatens to take over individual schools.


Why do I think that? Because my child was a student at North Atlanta High in APS district during Bloody Friday -- which Superintendent Davis justified by falsely announcing that NAHS was in danger of "state takeover".  My child remained at that school during the subsequent principal Gene Taylor''s futile attempts to hire necessary staff and faculty at NAHS' new location.   APS administrators stonewalled his requests, just as they had done with his predecessor, Mark Mygrant.  Both NAHS principals needed  and sought flexibility in hiring faculty and staff to fill key positions, but APS administrators repeatedly blocked the principals' requests.


 So, in my opinion, if a school needs  autonomy to succeed, we must find and fix the entity that is blocking that autonomy.    That entity is the school district's superintendent and administrators.  

newsphile
newsphile

This sounds like a sick joke.  The state that placed unnecessary regulations on public schools is now creating its own district that won't have all those regulations.  And, the district will have additional funds that haven't been available to the public school districts.  With both NOLA's and TN's issues with their programs, why are we continuing down this path?  Why not first try reducing regulations and giving public school districts this support and funding?

My thoughts:  1.  Control is being given to a governor whose DFCS, SHBP, GDOT, and  GEMA are ineffective and desperately in need of good management; I wonder which Hall Co. friend or supporter will be appointed superintendent and given an excessive salary.  2.  Additional funding for school district will probably never have any more impact on students than their current schools.  There is rampant p-card abuse, fraud, and out-of-control spending with little-to-no-oversight or accountability in state agencies. This Opportunity School District's funds will first pay for-profit management companies, educational consultants, and such before addressing students' needs. I doubt there will be any additional spending on each student.

Guess this means the new superintendent can buy a Mercedes or possibly a Jag,without seeking bids, another of Deal's grand ideas, and Deal gets more control to feed his ego. 

newsphile
newsphile

This sounds like a sick joke.  The state that placed unnecessary regulations on public schools is now creating its own district that won't have all those regulations.  And, the district will have additional funds that haven't been available to the public school districts.  Why not first try reducing regulations and giving public school districts this support and funding?

My thoughts:  1.  Control is being given to a governor whose DFCS, SHBP, GDOT, and  GEMA are ineffective and desperately in need of good management; I wonder which Hall Co. friend or supporter will be appointed superintendent and given an excessive salary.  2.  Additional funding for school district will probably never have any more impact on students than their current schools.  There is rampant p-card abuse, fraud, and out-of-control spending with little-to-no-oversight or accountability in state agencies. This Opportunity School District's funds will first pay for-profit management companies, educational consultants, and such before addressing students' needs.

Guess this means the new superintendent can buy a Mercedes or possibly a Jag,without seeking bids, another of Deal's grand ideas, and Deal gets more control to feed his ego. 

Lynn43
Lynn43

There is no reason to discuss the pros and cons of this proposal.  There is only one reason for the governor to do this: to award his buddies of the out-of-state charter school companies the contract to steal some more Georgia money.  His arrogant attitude toward public education is visible in each and every educational choice he makes and reveals his true motive to join ALEC and destroy public education for all. 

HIbought theRefs
HIbought theRefs

Republicans are supposed to be the small government people - yet here they are, trying to add another organization to the state government, answerable only to the governor.  Who says it doesn't pay to be elected?


Give the districts that same fleixbility that the OSG is going to have, and we might see results without yet another governor-appointed crony on the state payroll.



Betsy Ross1776
Betsy Ross1776

This is a good question "Why do we have to create another layer of government and hire a recovery district czar?"

Because those in charge of education are crooked and graft and corruption are ubiquitous.
Look at Atlanta public Schools.

The idiotic APS loaned millions to the city of Atlanta -- money it needed the following year and APS knew the city was going to gamble with it on speculative real estate. The speculative real estate went under and now APS needs millions. The "star"? superintendent that Maureen Downey worships has done nothing but spend, spend, spend. She wants to sell  APS property but the idiot mayor won't release the deeds.
So what does the spend spend spend super do? She hires More consultants. ! She has already spent the emergency fund.
so we have the largest cheating scandal in the world, an idiot for a mayor and a spending fool for a superintendent. Yes we need a recovery czar, a recovery dictator, a recorvery king, a recovery freaking army to get out of the catastrophe that is APS.

Betsy Ross1776
Betsy Ross1776

sneakpeak, you are wrong. I resent all welfare whether it's corporate or personal.
Generational "poverty" and welfare is ruining our society and our education system. It's past time to stop bleeding taxpayers. 

sneakpeakintoeducation
sneakpeakintoeducation

@Betsy Ross1776


Good for you that you resent all welfare. One for all and all for none! A society that provides safety networks for the neediest is a stronger society. Many people think that they will never need any sort of help from the government until unthinkable things happen and then they look to the government to help them through the darkest of times. I have relayed this story many times. I know someone who was a hater of the moocher society and the takers until he had a stroke and couldn't work and provide for his family. He then was on disability, food stamps and his kids got free lunch schools. When he had to walk in the shoes of those he so detested, it gave him a new outlook. If you had to walk in the shoes of the needy for a month, maybe you would change your mind too.

Cere
Cere

So in essence, the governor is saying that even the state could not handle running a school district as large as DeKalb (100,000+ students and about 140 schools). 

bu2
bu2

@Cere 

And yet our two largest districts-Gwinnet and Cobb-have zero of the 141 schools that could be taken over.

APS leads with 27, including 20 elementary schools-nearly half. DCSS is a close 2nd with 26, but they do have twice the number of students as APS.

sneakpeakintoeducation
sneakpeakintoeducation

As we have seen in other countries that provide a safety net to society, poverty can be overcome. When we provide the wrap-around services that ensure the child comes to school without being hungry, without wondering if mom/dad will be hope because they are working their 2nd or 3rd job for low minimum wage, without being sick or having dental problems, without worrying that they have the right clothing for the weather outside, etc... no amount of the failed status-quo reforms will improve the learning conditions for the child. Anyone who says otherwise has no experience in this classroom environment and has never taken a child psychology class to know that until the basic needs are met, the child will not be ready for learning. Of course, there are a few who have overcome dreadful circumstances but these are the outliers.


Of course, some on this blog will complain about the moocher society but they don't seem to have a problem with the billions that our corporations get in government welfare, especially companies like Walmart.


Unfortunately, the reformers want to bring the same chaos to our school system that the schools in NO and Muskegon Heights have seen; all without the success they promised to bring. NO has been pushed by the media as a success but the only way the schools have shown gains is by John White lowering the cut-off for the tests. And we want to replicate this type of reform?



MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

@sneakpeakintoeducation


Having taught children in poverty, I completely agree with your points.  We must all be watchful to observe if the Governor and his school reformers bring in out-of-state charter schools (in which profit is probably a motive), as in Tennessee.

MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

@sneakpeakintoeducation 


You and other readers may be interested in this statement from teachers in Tennessee:


"The Tennessee and Metro Nashville education associations released the following joint statement today following the Achievement School District’s announcement of its intent to take over Neely’s Bend Middle School. Statements below may be attributed to Tennessee Education Association President Barbara Gray and Metropolitan Nashville Education Association President Stephen Henry. 'The state takeover model has proven to be an ineffective solution for struggling schools. Schools in the Achievement School District in Memphis on average are doing no better or worse than before the takeover. The ASD method of ‘do less with more’ is already harming our students in Memphis. Increasing its presence in Nashville is irresponsible and reckless.' 'Nashville students, teachers and schools need support and resources from the state, not a heavy-handed, unwanted takeover of one of our community schools. Neely’s Bend parents and teachers made it very clear at the Dec. 4 ASD meeting that they believe in their students, their school and their community.' 'Just this week Governor Haslam spoke of the need for greater local control and decision making in public education. This must extend beyond teacher evaluations to decisions about how to improve struggling schools. The ASD and its charter operators do not know this community. Strangers do not understand what this school needs more than the students, parents and educators who make up the Neely’s Bend family.' 'Instead of continuing to funnel money into a program that has failed to deliver on its promises, the state should instead invest that money in struggling public schools to allow educators and parents to determine how to improve public education for their students.' 'Measuring a school’s value by student performance on one standardized test given one day during the school year does not provide a clear picture of the school, its students or its teachers. The only thing standardized test scores measure effectively is poverty. Impoverished, minority communities deserve the same quality education available in other parts of the city. That can be accomplished by the state increasing its investment in our students to provide the resources needed for student success.' ”


http://www.teateachers.org/news/tea-mnea-fight-back-against-asd-takeover-nashville-school

EdUktr
EdUktr

How about if the staff and money to pay salaries comes from existing state & federal subsidies to failing school districts?

As a taxpayer (and retired teacher) that's what I'd love to see.

Astropig
Astropig

"If flexibility and autonomy are the keys to turning around historically low-performing schools, why can’t Georgia do that without state takeover of schools?"


Who,exactly,asked them this question?

Astropig
Astropig

@ProHumanitate @Astropig


Okay, then Rep. Mayo needs to put an alternative out there. Just criticizing the one plan we have won't accomplish much.

ProHumanitate
ProHumanitate

@Astropig @ProHumanitate

He was basically asking why we would do this when the state already has the charter system and IE2 models for districts to pick, and all must pick either one of those or "status quo" by this summer. The two new options offer the kinds of flexibility the panelists were mentioning.

Astropig
Astropig

@ProHumanitate @Astropig


Questions are fine.No problem there.But, if he doesn't like the proposal(s) (and his question implies that he doesn't),why would it be a problem to draft his own initiative,file a bill and offer it as an alternative?

ProHumanitate
ProHumanitate

@Astropig

And he didn't say he didn't like it (and least not that I heard). He just noted that the panelists from Louisiana and TN had just said that what their "recovery" districts are able to do differently (and thus their success, in their opinions) was have flexibility from state requirements. GA is just now making the districts choose a flexibility option that does just that.

DrMonicaHenson
DrMonicaHenson

@ProHumanitate @Astropig Rep. Mayo is not an opponent of school choice and educational innovation--quite the contrary. He asked the question, I believe, in order to try to discern what flexibility in a recovery district would look like compared to the flexibility granted to charter systems and IE2 districts, and what is the difference, if any. I was there and heard the discussion.

DrMonicaHenson
DrMonicaHenson

@ProHumanitate @DrMonicaHenson @Astropig The folks from outside GA acknowledged being somewhat bewildered as to what exactly a "charter system" means. (This has also been something of a puzzle to those of us inside GA, to be fair.) I liked that the respondent from New Orleans pointed out that many of the charter school leaders in the RSD had previously been "traditional" district principals and teachers that had been trapped by stifling regulations, and the RSD flexibility has freed them up to design schools they believe will work.