The annual program placement report is due in January, which means that the superintendent has to deliver it either today or tomorrow or its late.
The report is required by Board Policy 2200, Equitable Access to Programs & Services. The policy reads:
The relevant factors considered and the basis for each change shall be documented in writing and kept on file. On a quarterly basis the Superintendent or designee shall provide an update to the School Board on decisions made during the previous quarter and a preview of upcoming decisions, if known. These quarterly updates should be provided to the School Board in April, July and October.The annual report on program placement is due tomorrow. Let's hope that this report is not deficient like the quarterly report submitted in October. The report delivered in October did not include any preview of upcoming decisions, despite the fact that a number of upcoming decisions had been publicly announced, such as the relocation of NOVA to the Horace Mann building, the relocation of The World School to the TT Minor building, or the intentions for north-end elementary APP to remain at Lincoln until it moves into the newly constructed elementary school on the Wilson-Pacific campus. The October report was also deficient as it did not include any preview of the upcoming decisions regarding Jane Addams, K-5 STEM at Boren, Schmitz Park, or north-end middle-school APP.
The fourth quarterly update shall be an annual report that provides detail about all the decisions that were made in the prior year and how those decisions relate to the eight decision making criteria outlined in this policy. The annual report should be provided to the School Board in January.
In addition to the preview of upcoming decisions, I am also eagerly anticipating the detailed rationale for the decisions made in the past year. The rationale for these decisions were not disclosed at the time. The previous superintendent refused to provide the transparency required by Board policy and the Board failed to demand it.
The Board must step up and enforce policy. We cannot expect to foster a culture of compliance if there is no response to non-compliance. We cannot expect policies to be followed if they are not enforced. At a time when the Superintendent has publicly announced his intention to discipline teachers for refusing to follow direct instructions, it would be inappropriate for him to be guilty of the same insubordination. Maybe a ten-day suspension without pay would teach him to toe the line.
The report is due tomorrow, but the program placement framework - the process by which program placement decisions are supposed to be made. This framework was supposed to be complete in September so the BEX IV planning could work around it. Now the deadline for the framework has been pushed out to April. Without a permanent assistant superintendent for Teaching and Learning - and no indication that we will have one before the end of the school year - the timeline for the framework is likely to be extended again.
The absence of any coherent program placement plan or process hobbles the District's ability to move forward with decisions about capacity management, facilities planning, and student assignment. The acknowledged absence of any coherent process should be shameful to the Board and the district staff. I know that I'm ashamed of them.