With Avossa interviewing this week in Florida, Fulton could be superintendent shopping

Soon, Fulton County Schools could be looking for a new leader, along with DeKalb and Decatur.

Fulton school chief Robert Avossa is one of three finalists for the head job in the Palm Beach County School District.

Dr. Robert Avossa

Dr. Robert Avossa

Avossa will be interviewed on Thursday at 2 p.m. at a public meeting in West Palm Beach.

(The interview will be livestreamed on the Palm Beach County School District site.)

The other two candidates are Desmond Blackburn, chief of school performance and accountability in Broward County, and Jesus Jara, deputy superintendent of Orange County, Fla., schools. Valeria Silva, schools superintendent in St. Paul, Minn., was a finalist but withdrew from consideration.

The Sun Sentinel reported all but one of the school board members picked Avossa as one of their top three candidates.

According to the AJC:

Avossa, who still has a full two years left on his contract, said Fulton school board members have been aware of his interest in the position. He declined to go into detail about why he’s applying for the Palm Beach job. He said it’s the first position he’s formally applied for since becoming Fulton’s superintendent nearly four years ago.

He said a recruiting firm which searches for superintendent job candidates for schools across the U.S. approached him in recent weeks about the Palm Beach job. “It’s way too early for me to share anything more than I’m a candidate, ” Avossa said.

 

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22 comments
drevange
drevange

Dr. Avossa (our Superintendent) was chosen by a unanimous vote by the Palm Beach County School Board as their next Superintendent after a search where he was approached for the position by the firm leading the search.


Although painful, I take this as a positive sign of where Fulton is headed and that has been put in place is the right direction and this is being recognized.  Some may take it as he is jumping ship, but Palm Beach County is a much higher profile system (11th largest) and I do not begrudge him at all going for a position that is higher paying and a much higher profile.


As a personal aside - hopefully the School Board will strongly consider Scott Muri, the Deputy Superintendent of Academics to ensure a strong continuity of what has been put in place by the county.  The Charter System with flexibilities and the Continuous Achievement Framework especially (which allows each child to progress in math and language arts at their pace) are the right path forward.

Beverly Hall
Beverly Hall

What do they say about a sinking ship "All the RATS jump off first".   Lawd JESUS, help us all. 

drevange
drevange

@Beverly Hall Funny posting as Beverly Hall but as I mention in my own post - the move is to a higher profile and higher paying position.  He has done a great job and I do not begrudge him one bit.

Freedom for FCS
Freedom for FCS

Watch out palm Beach - look at the Broad pattern before you move forward with him (oh wait, you've already told him he's your guy - Robert's not too good at keeping secrets!)  Avossa is a bully who knows zip about education.  Let's look at his doctoral cohort from Wingate (I believe that was the first group to go through this "rigorous" program) - his puppet Vic Shandor was showing his ignorance all over the place - and when he was sick of dealing with Katie Reeves and wanted to move to the Northeast Learning Community - Robert told him no so Shandor took his toys and went to play elsewhere.


Avossa doesn't care about anyone except Bobby.  He's a textbook narcissist (look it up here Robert http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/narcissist).


Heck, Avossa took a 16% pay increase putting him over $300,000 annually while NO FULTON COUNTY EMPLOYEE HAS RECEIVED A STEP INCREASE OR SALARY INCREASE IN OVER 7 YEARS! (but wait didn't the employees get "bonuses" - PLEASE)


His goal of having a 90% on time graduation rate in the district by 2017 is probably a big reason why he's getting out now.  He's surrounded himself with cronies, he plays both sides of an issue (see his open letter to GA Legislature about testing).  He's a self-serving clown with horrible ADHD who wouldn't know good teaching if it landed on him.  The sooner he leaves the better.  In fact, I know the middle school where his son attends will be happy to get rid of that little hellion.

Bye bye Bobby!

P.S. Why is PB even going through with this charade? Avossa's been telling his inner circle he's leaving for weeks now - he told one of them "I've got this one sewn up - start looking to buy your years back in Florida" - Way to be transparent there PB school board.  He's your problem now!

Tcope
Tcope

My spouse is a Fulton County Board of Education employee. The employees like Dr. Avossa and want him to stay.

anothercomment
anothercomment

Avossa can't have the door hit him in the but too soon. Hae has done much damage to Fulton County School District. All one has to do is look at how he has added his cartel to the administration. Then to boot he is building his palace for his administrators in Sandy springs. No one in Sandy springs wants the administrative headquarters of the Fulton County schools in Sandy springs. That would just bring more south side drop offs in Sandy springs I from the cartels workers,

What Sandy Springs wants is what Dunwoody wants is the 8 words removed from the constitution so they can have an independent school district. Which will then have independent school districts from Roswell, Johnscreek, and Milton as well. South Fulton wanted to be their own city and should have been, with their own city.

The stunt that Avossa did in his first month,,trumping up charges against long term Principal Eddie Echols at Riverwood. All in order to fire him, so he could bring in his buddy from NC, who didn't even stay a year. Paul Howard refused to prosecute Eddie Echols. Now Avossa and Fulton County Schools are facing a lawsuit for this stunt.

I for one would love to have John Barge. He can help us get out of this mess created by Avossa.

drevange
drevange

@anothercomment  Whatever.  The path Avossa has put Fulton on is the right direction. You just sound like a whiner.  No desire or need to have independent school districts.  Barge - whatever.

TeacherofAtRisk
TeacherofAtRisk

What reforms have worked in South Fulton County?  No much!  In fact, Banneker hired a crook last year and Fulton County never addressed or pursued charges!  She will be somebody's next Superintendent!!!

TeacherofAtRisk
TeacherofAtRisk

What reforms have worked in South Fulton County?  No much!  In fact, Banneker hired a crook last year and Fulton County never addressed or pursued charges!  She will be somebody's next Superintendent!!!

living-in-outdated-ed
living-in-outdated-ed

Fulton County Schools has a deep bench of talent, should Avossa leave. I would recommend one of the city's rising stars, Ken Zeff, who is a Broad Fellow, Leadership Atlanta alumnus and currently Chief Strategy Officer of Fulton County Schools.   He's a keeper.  Smart guy with a good heart whose values are in the right place.  He cares deeply about these kids!

DrJohnTrotter
DrJohnTrotter

Maureen, I don't think that the school board members are pressuring Robert Avossa to leave.  He apparently left a mess for the new superintendent to clean up when the new supe arrived in Charlotte.  It had something to do with graduation rates and so forth. Avossa got hooked up with the Eli Broad Superintendents Brothel...and boom!  He landed the superintendency in Fulton County even before he was granted his doctorate from little Wingate University (I think that it is now "University") about an hour east of Charlotte.  Don't underestimate his penchant for hastily moving around and climbing that corporate ladder.  He accomplished what the Gates-Broad duo wanted -- he pushed for Fulton County to be a charter school system.  No, I don't think that it has a lot to do with frustration of expectations in his case.  I think that he is what we call "an educational sl-t" in our book.


By the way, I tried earlier to post something about the cheating scandal and trial, but I presume that the Filter Monster grabbed it.

Wascatlady
Wascatlady

Why is PBC hitting so heavily on Latino educators?

Wascatlady
Wascatlady

Avossa can't hold a job, can he?

MaureenDowney
MaureenDowney moderator

@Wascatlady I think he can hold a job if he wants --- but there are a lot of systems out there looking for new leaders.Charleston and Montgomery County just parted ways with their school chiefs, despite impressive records. 


Here is a link to the recent NPR interview with Montgomery County's Joshua Starr about his departure, and here is one of the questions and answers from that interview that  helps explain the turnover among school chiefs:


http://www.npr.org/blogs/ed/2015/02/15/385774711/q-a-exit-interview-with-a-nationally-known-school-leader


As we've reported, urban school superintendents tend to have a short "shelf life." Why do you think that is?

I think the expectations for the superintendent can be not aligned with reality sometimes.

One reason is the incredible polemics of the reform or school-improvement movement that's going on these days. With [issues like] testing, school choice, superintendents have to act in the middle. We're stewards of the community's values. And we also have to comply with the accountability regs from the state and the feds.

People want to see dramatic improvement quickly. The expectation that a superintendent can do it alone I think just doesn't work well. It takes an entire community to eliminate the achievement gap and raise standards.

And the budget issues don't help.

Wascatlady
Wascatlady

@MaureenDowney @Wascatlady I agree about shelf life.  Every system wants a savior. My own goes through them like a chipper through toilet paper.  I hate to see supts that hop from job to job, however, every 3-5 years.

drevange
drevange

@MaureenDowney @Wascatlady  The path Avossa has put Fulton on is the right direction and I think it is being rewarded.  Palm Beach is the 11th largest district with a much higher profile and higher pay.  He did not move to Lumpkin County (no offense)

Astropig
Astropig

Apparently "character issues" have caught up with former state superintendent John Barge. He had applied for this position and didn't make the first cut. His losing streak is now so long that I've lost count.You think it might be because nobody trusts him as far as they can throw him?


Anyway, Avossa has been in place long enough that maybe a change of scenery will do him good. PBC is big and varied (the western part of the county is pretty poor and rural and touches Lake Okeechobee and the eastern part is...Well, it's an enclave of the 1%ers.).Good luck to him.

DrJohnTrotter
DrJohnTrotter

Robert Avossa is definitely what we describe in our tome, The MACE Manifesto:  The Politically Incorrect, Irreverent, and Scatological Examination of What is Wrong with American Public Education, as "an educational sl-t."  These are the gypsy superintendents who jump from one school board bed to the next all over the country for a bit more money, power, and/or prestige.  If he is nabbed for the job in Palm Beach, then good riddance in Fulton County and sympathy for the teachers in Palm Beach. 

drevange
drevange

@DrJohnTrotter Whatever.  the path Avossa has put Fulton on is the right direction and I think it is being rewarded.  Palm Beach is the 11th largest district with a much higher profile and higher pay.  He did not move to Lumpkin County (no offense)