Friday, November 28, 2014

Another Ed Reform Sign from Nyland

The Times this morning has their own, rather subdued, story on the attempt by President Peaslee to install Superintendent Nyland permanently.


One, they are reporting that he "met with members of the superintendent's staff cabinet Monday night."

That's about the exact same time that the Board was meeting in Executive Session to talk about his evaluation.  Apparently, he had notice that the job offer might be coming.

Two, it would appear from the item on the agenda that the sponsors of the item - Sharon Peaslee and Ron English - decided that it would be in the district's "best interest" to install Nyland.  Given English's performance both on the Gates Foundation grant and the student data breach, I'm not sure he is the one to ask about the district's best interests.

Three, Nyland's speech patterns appear to mimic Mayor Murray's on several fronts including preschool and students of color. 

Then there was one rather interesting quote of Nyland's that ties directly to one from Secretary Arne Duncan earlier this year on Special Education students:

"Other priorities include instituting some 'changes in course' for the district's special-education program and studying whether later start times - especially for high school students - would help kids improve academically."  

From NPR, 

Education Secretary Arne Duncan announced what he calls "a major shift" in how the government evaluates the effectiveness of federally funded special education programs.

No one can deny that the Special Education department needs an overall especially in leadership.  But didn't they just "change course" putting more students into Gen Ed classrooms?

Again from NPR:

School officials must show that these children are getting instructional support in a timely manner and that they have full access to the curriculum and everything else that goes on in school.

Under the new guidelines, Duncan says he'll require proof that these kids aren't just being served but are actually making academic progress.

"We know that when students with disabilities are held to high expectations and have access to a robust curriculum, they excel," Duncan said.

Meaning, those students better be able to measure up in exactly the same ways as Gen Ed students.  That's fine because most of them can...with supports.  Where are those and when can parents expect to see them from both the Feds and the district?

Last thing.  The Superintendent has been saying that he wants to create a 100-day plan for better communications with the public.  It may be that the Board isn't interested in this new initiative, preferring to skulk around with information on the most important decision they can make as a Board.

1 comment:

RottenInDenmark said...

"Two, it would appear from the item on the agenda that the sponsors of the item - Sharon Peaslee and Ron English - decided that it would be in the district's "best interest" to install Nyland. Given English's performance both on the Gates Foundation grant and the student data breach, I'm not sure he is the one to ask about the district's best interests."

Where was Ron English when Nyland signed the Gates grant for $750K; a grant that connects the city to the district before a partnership agreement had been signed?

You are right on about Nyland.