Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Alliance for Education community engagement update

The Alliance for Education lists Community Engagement as one of their three primary missions.

Towards that end they have a blog. Their last blog post was made on May 9, 2013, nearly a year ago.

They have a Facebook page. Their Facebook page has 646 likes. The Facebook page has ten posts so far this year. Most of them are about the Alliance's annual community breakfast fundraiser. Those ten posts have attracted a total of 25 likes and 1 comment. The comment is from an Alliance staffer encouraging people to attend the annual community breakfast.

They have a Twitter account. So far this year, no one has tweeted them.

Would it be harsh of me to conclude that the Alliance is failing at community engagement?

Maybe so. When I take a closer look at the sort of community engagement the Alliance is committed to doing, I see that they are not actually interested in engaging the community. They are really only interested in engaging "community leaders". From their Mission Statement:

Community Engagement: The Alliance has a strong heritage as a convener of community leadership. We are committed to nurturing inclusive, actionable civic engagement that brings together parents, educators, business leaders, researchers, policy makers, direct service providers and other stakeholders around education issues. To learn more about our convening groups, visit Philanthropic Partnership for Public Education (PPPE), Our Schools Coalition (OSC), and Seattle College Access Network (SCAN).
You will notice that there are no ordinary community members in any of their "convening groups".

It's time for someone else to step in and take over the job of fundraiser for Seattle Public Schools. We need a group that will actually try to connect with the community as a whole and will not participate in advocacy like the Alliance.


Melissa Westbrook said...

Charlie, they don't care and they don't have to. End of story.

I wish someone else WOULD challenge them.

I note that they are apparently going to have some kind of research about "effective" School Boards to give the Board.

First, the Board, to the best of my knowledge, didn't ask for their help.

Two, the Board just created a new Code of Conduct (gasp!) on their own.

Three, the Board has sat through at least three retreats where the Alliance has fed them information on what an "effective" Board should do and not do.

If I were a Board member,I'd take their latest report, thank them and put it in the circular file.

As Italians say, basta cosi. (that's enough).

mirmac1 said...

Were those Facebook likes primarily from Bangladesh? If not, they should take a lesson from Michelle Rhee.

Charlie Mas said...

The Board is completely ineffective, so if they are doing what the Alliance says will make them an effective Board then I have some doughnuts that will help them lose weight.

Anonymous said...

Charlie, your homeboy DeBell was on a mission to make the board become "totally ineffective" via the code that you pumped for him on this blog.

Thanks to that P.R. media blitz, the school board has been struggling with being called "micro-managers" on the one hand, and "totally ineffective" on the other. DeBell and his billionaire backers' attempt to smear the board made Karl Rove's talking points look like an amateur hour.

I'll take this board any day over the more recent crews. Thankfully, Sue Peters was elected or we would be on the fast-track of being lapdogs for the Alliance once again.

--enough already