The Seattle Times published another story praising the Superintendent. Yawn.
This one appears in the news section of the paper instead of the op-ed page. It explains that all of the work that she has done over the past three years has just been a preparation for the work that is to come. That's why we haven't seen any results yet - she's just been laying the groundwork. The big thing coming will be the school scorecard and the resulting support that will go to struggling schools (the year after that). So really, we're still two years away from any change that she's created and three years away from the time when it would be fair to start measuring it. She says that it will take another eight to ten years.
So definitely she wants to be held accountable, but not until 2018 or 2020.
The superintendent says that the changes she is implementing are "It's proven, it's best practice, the research is out there." The people who did the research, however, say that Seattle is the first district to ever try their ideas. Hmmm. Is Seattle using something proven or are we among the first to try it. It can't be both, can it?
The Superintendent says "Having 87 schools and 87 ways to teach math or reading does not get the system or our kids anywhere. It leaves too many kids out." Okay, eighty-seven ways is too many. How many ways is right? Is it one? Will that not leave any kids out?
The Superintendent brushes off concerns about her connection with the Broad Foundation.
"She's impatient with those who charge that her connection with Broad means she intends to pursue charter schools. "We don't have charter schools. So let's put that over there, and let's talk about something else. How about kids being successful, how about kids being challenged? How about providing interventions to close the achievement gap?" Yes. By all means. Let's talk about kids being successful - what is she doing about that? Nothing that I can see. All of the advanced learning programs are deteriorating under her leadership. Let's talk about kids being challenged. The mandated fidelity of implementation and vertical alignment discourages differentiation. Let's talk about interventions - I'm not seeing them. Why are we continuing to promote students who have not met the Standards for their grade level without providing them with the support they need to reach grade level?
I judge the superintendent's performance by the measures that she sets for herself. '
By those measures she hasn't done much and hasn't made much of a start.