In June of 2010, Dr. Goodloe-Johnson wrote Wendy Kopp, the head of TFA, for advice on someone to head SPS's Human Resources department.
Wendy wrote back inquiring:
…whether you might be open to considering candidates who may not fit the traditional requirements/profile ( e.g. not necessarily 10 years of HR-type exp) since many of our strong leaders have not had the most traditional paths but may be interested and compelling candidates for a role like this one.
We are absolutely interested in non-tradional candidates. You have also prompted me to think about revising the 10 years and adding strategic thinking and transformative leadership as required qualifications.
One more thing - - we were talking with a high-potential TFA alum in WA state about this and before he throws his hat in the ring he wanted to understand whether this is a mostly classic human resources role or whether you’re looking for a chief talent officer to truly rethink teacher recruitment, selection, evaluation, development, etc.
Absolutely a CTO to rethink HOUR reporting to me, hoping to get a TIF grant.
So thought I’d float the idea of Greg Wong. She continues “he’s a high-potential alum in the Seattle area who we believe can have a significant impact in education over time. He is currently an associate at K&L Gates law firm there.
Greg has told us that, although he is not been actively job searching, he’s interested in hearing more about the role if you are interested. He hadppened to see some of your staff members – Susan and Holly – at a committee meeting yesterday and brified discussed the role with them.
I am familiar with his name. Please link him on to Don.
Not sure he's ready to apply but I think just think he’s someone who might be worth trying to recruit into a senior-level strategic role at some point.
When a district signs on to TFA, they are enabled to place job opportunities on TFA's website as well as look at resumes. And this is how they manage to get more and more former TFAers into districts. Even for people who don't have backgrounds in whatever departments they are applying for, the mere fact that they have the TFA stamp of approval and are "leaders", makes them qualified for ANY job in any district.
Would SPS do this for ANY candidate? This waiving of qualification requirements? Wendy Kopp puts out this vision of not just an HR person but a person to "rethink" teacher qualifications? First of all, HR is not just hiring teachers. Is there some litmus test for someone other than teachers? What questions would Mr. Wong, if hired, have asked other prospective hires to make sure they meet the TFA test?
Mr. Wong either didn't apply or didn't get the job but he's not the head of HR.
That Dr. Goodloe-Johnson thought this a good idea, that she allowed herself to be talked into "transformative leadership" over real qualifications - it's frightening. And, given how truly into TFA Dr. Enfield is, I have to wonder about what guidance SHE will give our new HR head, Paul Apostle.
Now the amusing. Here's what the former deputy mayor of D.C. had to say in a group e-mail that included MGJ after the mayor of D.C. was defeated (bold mine):
Alas, no dice; DC’s Mayor lost reelection last night.
There will be a lot of doomsday scenarios for ed reform in DC and write large, but it will be greatly exaggerated. To the extent that we’ve created an ed reform monster in DC that has consumed too much of the ed reform oxygen, I apologize. I’ve no doubt the ed reform envelope will continue to be pushed by folks like you.
I’m going to do my best to stay optimistic about DC. (Lord knows lots of people were scratching their heads when a newly elected 35 year Mayor w/o a legislative record and his Latino MIT MBA deputy mayor rolled out a Korean-American teacher chick as their pick for Chancellor).
A Korean-American chick. Priceless.