Anyone who has ever read Oprah's O Magazine knows she has a column where she talks about an "ah ha" moment.
So I have been pondering the Martin Floe issue and thinking that Ms. Dussault certainly isn't all powerful and Susan Enfield probably thought long and hard about this. So I went back and looked through some other data (and talked to some trusted sources). I believe I now understand the reasoning behind this firing but I think the district has a fight on its hands, nonetheless.
So if all this is all true, then the district is within its rights to fire Mr. Floe to fulfill NCLB requirements.
Or are they?
First, I'm not sure the feds are even enforcing this stuff anymore given how NCLB is in this netherworld of possible restructuring.
Second, there's 2009-2010 document, It is odd because the document explains how the district's groupings are different from the Feds. So I think the grouping in this document is SPS's but why wouldn't they put what each school's federal ranking was? It's very confusing.
• Seattle’s school performance framework is different from the federal government’s No Child Left Behind policy. The district created its own framework in order to measure student growth in a more fair and accurate way than the federal government measures it.
• No Child Left Behind requires all schools to make “Adequate Yearly Progress” (AYP) every year. This means hat the percentages of students in every subgroup who pass state tests must increase. Unlike Seattle’s system, it does not take into account student growth unless students pass tests. Schools that do not meet
AYP are put into federal “Steps of Improvement.”
• Federal Steps of Improvement are different from Seattle’s grouping of schools.
• Schools must make AYP for students in every ethnicity, students in poverty, students with limited English, and students receiving special education services.
– AYP Step 1 – Schools not making AYP for two years
– AYP Step 2 – Schools not making AYP for three years
– AYP Step 3 – Schools not making AYP for four years
– AYP Step 4 – Schools not making AYP for five years
– AYP Step 5 – Schools not making AYP for six years.
Update note: I totally got this wrong about schools and their rankings. For whatever reason, the district's rankings go from Level 1 (the worst) to Level 5 (the best). NCLB ranks Level 1 (Alert) to Level 5 (Restructuring). Why the district did this is a mystery to me. I find it confusing (and I obviously got it wrong the first time around).
But again, my question is when Ingraham was at Federal level 4, it requires the following:
In addition to continuing all the requirements for Level 3, the district is required to take at least one of the following actions: replacement of staff who are relevant to the school not demonstrating AYP, implementation of a new curriculum, significantly decrease management authority at the school, appoint one or more outside experts to advise the school, extend for that school the length of the school year or school day, or restructure the internal organization of the school.
Did any of the above happen last year? (Thank you to Monkey Puzzle for pointing out my error.)
Third, while Ingraham was slowly slipping downward, where was Michael Tolley who was in charge of high schools the last several years? What was he doing?
Fourth, did parents and staff realize the gravity of what was happening? Were they warned by anyone in the district?
Now I looked at Ingraham's CSIP plan for this year and it's not the most impressive document. You don't sense a lot of urgency. Is that because Mr. Floe didn't take this all that seriously or because the district didn't give him the sense of urgency?
If Level 2 is SPS's notation and Level 5 is the feds, what was Ingraham supposed to be doing and was that clearly translated to them by Michael Tolley and Susan Enfield in the past couple of years? I mean, the CAO for the last year was Susan Enfield. I wonder what her communications to Principal Floe and/or Michael Tolley on this matter were?
Also, Director Carr said a hearing examiner will be appointed to hear his appeal (if he does follow thru). This is from an RCW but it also contradicts Board policy which states the Board has this job. Naturally the RCW rules but it would behoove the Board and its Governance Officer to make sure Board policy doesn't have this kind of error.
Both Mr. Floe and the district have to agree to the examiner selection. The district has a good record of winning in these kinds of cases but I have to wonder if the examiner will turn and ask the district what it was doing to push/support Principal Floe. If he can prove that they were not telling him, in detail and in a timely manner, about what was coming, they may not come out of this looking all that good. In fact, they might even lose the case if the examiner finds that yes, Mr. Floe didn't do all that he could but no, the district did not communicate the facts clearly to him and/or support his efforts.