"is the primary agency charged with overseeing K-12 public education in Washington state. Led by State School Superintendent Randy Dorn, OSPI works with the state’s 295 school districts to administer basic education programs and implement education reform on behalf of more than one million public school students."Yeah. But what does he do?
What tasks are required by the duty to oversee K-12 public education in Washington State?
What basic education programs does the OSPI administer?
What education reform does the OSPI implement?
Honestly, I've been through the list of stuff that the OSPI is supposed to do and I'd say that about half of it looks redundant and useless and the other half looks mechanical. It looks like a bureaucracy that runs itself for little purpose other than to run itself. I doubt that the Superintendent of Public Instruction, Randy Dorn, has much actual work to do running the place. I doubt that any effort by the superintendent to become involved in the work of the department would really be welcome. The bureaucrats would probably want him to butt out and go away. I think he just makes speeches. It looks to me to be a figurehead job like Lt. Governor.
If I were the superintendent of public instruction I would begin by more narrowly redefining the mission of the office and stripping it down. I would also make it take the enforcement duties seriously, which it does not do now. The OSPI should never have approved the applications for the conditional certificates of the Teach for America corps members as they were written. The OSPI should never have accepted the transformation plans of schools in Step 5 of NCLB as they have. If the OSPI wants to push for education reform, then they should be more closely scrutinizing school and district improvement plans. Right now they only confirm that the plans are filed, not that they are meaningful, implemented, or effective. If I were the superintendent of public instruction I would be issuing reports on the effectiveness of district administrations. Big, well-publicized reports on which districts are taking effective action and which districts are phoning it in.
Most of them are phoning it in.
Somebody correct me if I'm wrong, but it doesn't appear to me that the Superintendent of Public Instruction does anything beneficial except administer some grant programs. Even then, all they do is collect reports and issue checks. They don't provide any real oversight.
Am I wrong?