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Wednesday, July 01, 2009

New CAO

According to the PI, Susan Enfield will be introduced on Monday as the new CAO. She comes to us from Vancouver, where she is deputy superintendent. She was CAO in Portland from 2004 to 2006. I will be interested to hear what people know about her.

http://www.seattlepi.com/local/407777_schools01.html

39 comments:

suep. said...

All I've read so far is that she left Portland Public Schools a couple of years ago, when the Superintendent at the time, Vicki Phillips, was apparently performing slash and burn techniques on Portland's schools similar to what we are currently experiencing in Seattle (before leaving to join the Gates Foundation). ["Hurricane Vicki" -- Willamette Week, http://wweek.com/editorial/3313/8520/]

"Some of Phillips' own hires have also left or changed jobs under her leadership. Susan Enfield, who earned $117,000 a year as director of teaching and learning, followed Phillips from Pennsylvania, where they had previously worked together in the state's education department. But Enfield left in the summer of 2006, less than two years after taking the job, and her position, which is now advertised at $132,000 a year, remains open. Enfield now works for the Evergreen School District in Vancouver, Wash. She did not return phone calls."

So if Enfield left Portland because she did not agree with Phillips, then that might speak well of Enfield.

Meanwhile, and speaking of new hires at SPS, here's a bit of information on what a "Broad Resident" is, from a Portland education blog called Global Ideologies in Education:
http://www.ourglobaleducation.com/2009/04/broad-foundation-and-portland-public.html


As has been discussed elsewhere recently on this blog, Supt. Goodloe-Johnson has quietly requested the addition of a "Broad Resident" to her admin staff to the tune of $100,000 or so.

Many of us have questioned this request. Who or what is a "Broad Resident" and why do we need it? Why isn't this expenditure and potential outside influence being publicly discussed or voted on by the School Board?

Why is our District funding yet another admin person when SPS admin is already bloated? And why is it the Superintendent can find money for another admin person, but can't find the funds for essential people like teachers?

According to the blogger in Portland, "Broad Residents" come from the Broad Foundation, which funds half their salaries (while the school district must fund the other half). What they do in the District isn't clear. If it's some kind of glorified internship or on-the-job training, why is our District/taxpayer money paying for this?

Moreover, who invited the Broad Foundation to Seattle and why?

This matters because Broad has an agenda and vision for public schools that has not been openly discussed or voted on by our School Board or even the Superintendent.

As mentioned elsewhere on this blog, the Broad agenda for "education reform" consists of training superintendents to act like CEOs, apparently to run school districts like corporations, standardization and apparently endless testing are part of the plan, along with a disdain for the teacher's union, which is viewed as an obstacle, and an apparent endgame of corporate-run, for-profit charter schools funded by public money.

Did any of us vote for that? Was that in Goodloe-Johnson's job description?

Yet, we have a School Superintendent who was trained by the Broad Foundation, who was recently evaluated in her annual review by a fellow Broad affiliate, Tom Payzant (therefore, neither an independent nor objective outsider), and is now requesting the Seattle School District also fund a Broad Resident to work at her side.

Who is running our school district?

Sahila said...

Gavroche - are you cross-posting this information to Harium's blog, and sending it to Board members?

If not, and you have the time, please would you?

My question to the Board, which I intend to pursue quite vigorously is this: Do you know about the Broad connection as its being manifested here in Seattle and do you know/understand what is the Foundation's mission?... If not, then here is factual data to inform your future decisions and to revisit past ones. And I (we) expect to see concrete signs that you are acting on this new information.

If you do know all of this, why are you pursuing this (Broad influenced) path without coming clean to the SPS community about your intentions?

I think of all the things that have been going on, this link and the lack of public involvement in choosing to go down this path (and, as has been pointed out repeatedly Washington's refusal twice to sanction charter schools), might be the strongest thread we have to be able to call a halt to this whole process.

owlhouse said...

What I noticed in reading her Linked In profile, is she spent just 4 years in the classroom before moving into a rotation of admin positions, each notably short.

It does seem she's been trying to move north, as she was a strong contender for superintendent of Bellevue PS this past winter.

I have to say, that undergrad in english/lit at Berkeley is comforting somehow. Surely she would not favor standardized LA curriculum??

Anonymous said...

I presented the information to the board on Monday regarding the Broad Resident and Payzant. The statement submitted to the Board is as follows:

Public Hearing on the School Budget for 2009-2010
June 29, 2009

First, I would like to note that I e-mailed to Michael DeBell and Mary Bass the contact information for the State Project Manager supervising the Pre-Disaster Mitigation funds for the State of Washington. This is the $3M grant that can be used to seismically upgrade the Meany building.

For the next item, I will be referring to page 23 of the budget that describes the expenses of the Core Administration. One of the key changes noted is an addition to the superintendent’s office of a Broad Resident and a senior admin staff position for an increase of $127,000.

Several of us want to know if this is related to the Broad Foundation. The Broad Foundation is clear in its’ goal of establishing charter schools in urban areas around the country.

Charter schools basically being privatized schools that use public funds and which are more exclusive than inclusive of school populations.

In fact it’s common knowledge that Dr. Goodloe-Johnson is on the Board of Directors for the Broad Foundation. What might be less common knowledge is that Tom Payzant, the “independent evaluator” who was a part of the superintendent’s yearly evaluation this year is also a Broad graduate who is listed as a speaker in the Urban Superintendents’ Academy on the Broad Foundation’s website.

It is also our understanding that the Broad Foundation will be paying for half of the Broad Resident’s salary. We would like to know why we will be paying for this position at all when our students desperately need more teachers. Even one teacher can make a profound difference in the lives of many students and a positive impact on a school community within a year.

We want to know why there is so munch involvement with the Broad Foundation when none of us have either voted for or requested the Broad Foundation’s involvement in our school system particularly when we have voted twice against charter schools in our state.

We are following the money and we don’t like where some of it is going.

We would also like to know how the $9M Gates’ Foundation gift is being used by SPS. On KUOW, a representative of SPS stated that the money was being used for additional testing. If that is the case I want to know why the money is being spent on additional testing when we have the WASL, what is the test, who is evaluating the test results and what is the purpose is of the testing.

Basically we want more information provided on these subjects and more transparency on the use of our money.

beansa said...

Here is some more info for y'all:

The Broad Residency provides:

Immediate placement in a full-time managerial role in a school district or charter management organization reporting to a superintendent or top executive
Opportunity to work on projects positively impacting student achievement
Eight quarterly professional development sessions over two years
Access to a national network of leaders making an impact in public education through management
$85,000 - $95,000 annual salary
The Broad Residency is a two-year leadership development program that places participants into full-time high-level managerial positions in school districts and charter management organizations (CMOs), where they can have an immediate impact on the education of America’s students. Broad Residents receive two years of professional development and access to a nationwide network of education leaders. The Residency is designed for individuals with an advanced degree (e.g. master’s, juris doctorate, Ph.D.), at least four years of work experience and a successful track record of leadership and/or management.

Many school districts are the size of Fortune 500 companies. They need leaders and strong managers who understand the complex operations of a large organization—successful professionals with experience in human resources, operations, finance, strategic planning and other critical business areas.

In school districts, Broad Residents report directly to the superintendent or a top cabinet member. In CMOs, Residents report directly to the CEO or chief operating officer. Residents are often tasked with leading major projects like opening new schools, leading budgeting processes, increasing operational efficiencies or improving human resources. Residents earn starting annual salaries of $85,000 to $95,000 and participate in a series of professional development sessions over the course of two years. At the conclusion of the two-year program, The Broad Residency expects that school districts and CMOs will hire Residents permanently in their current positions or promote them into more senior leadership posts.

Now in its seventh year, The Broad Residency has placed more than 165 Residents in more than 35 urban school districts and CMOs nationwide. Eighty-six percent of Broad Residency alumni still work in education and continue to positively impact student achievement as leaders in the education industry.


(to be continued...)

beansa said...

(continued from previous comment)

Former Broad Residents of SPS - that's right, this is not the first Broad Resident of our district

1) BRAD BERNATEK
The Broad Residency Class of 2006-2008
Current Organization: Seattle Public Schools
M.B.A., Kelley School of Business, Indiana University
M.A., Business Administration, Ross School of Business, University of Michigan
B.A., History, University of Michigan

Brad Bernatek currently serves as director of research, evaluation and assessment for Seattle Public Schools. In this role, Bernatek runs the department responsible for student statistics including enrollment, demographics, evaluation and standardized testing. During his Residency, Bernatek served the district as interim manager for research, evaluation and assessment and as special assistant to the chief operations officer. Previously, Bernatek has served as manager of strategy consulting for IBM Business Consulting as well as a strategy consultant at PriceWaterhouseCoopers. He began his career as a financial analyst at Ford Motor Company, where he worked on the business plan for global training initiatives related to the Ford 2000 reorganization. Bernatek has a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Michigan, a master’s degree in business administration from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan, and a master’s degree in business administration from the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University.

2)CORDELL CARTER
The Broad Residency Class of 2008-2010
Current Organization: Seattle Public Schools
J.D., University of Notre Dame Law School
M.S., Public Policy and Management, Carnegie Mellon University
B.A., Political Science, University of Washington

“I believe that our school systems must harness the tools and knowledge of the private sector to deliver world-class services to our children. Furthermore, as a former public school student, I am obliged to assist public schools and students because others did the same for me years ago. While I have volunteered in public schools wherever I have lived, The Broad Residency provides me an opportunity to add value to schools and students everyday.”


Prior to joining The Broad Residency, Cordell Carter was a visiting attorney in the legal department of Kreditanstalt fuer Wiederaufbau (KfW) Bankengruppe in Frankfurt, Germany. In this role, he focused on public-private partnerships and the European carbon emission credits trading system, and advised on several aspects of U.S. law. Previously, Carter was a management consultant for IBM Business Consulting Services, where he focused on enterprise architecture and business process reengineering projects for federal and state government clients.

(to be continued...)

beansa said...

(continued from previous comment)

3)JESSICA DE BARROS
The Broad Residency Class of 2008-2010
Current Organization: Seattle Public Schools
M.P.A., University of Washington
B.A., Political Science, American University

“My mission is to dramatically reduce the achievement gap in urban public schools, and I believe The Broad Residency will provide me the opportunity to accomplish this. As a graduate of Seattle Public Schools, I believe it is time for me to directly apply my skills to turning the district around—with a focus on students of color and low-income students.”


Prior to joining The Broad Residency, Jessica de Barros created education policy at the local, state and national levels. Most recently, she started her own consulting business to assist school districts, national foundations, nonprofit organizations and government in developing policies to improve high school graduation and career readiness rates. Previously, de Barros served as the senior policy analyst in the Seattle mayor’s office for education, where she developed and managed policy for the Families and Education Levy, a 7 million investment in preschool, after-school, middle school, dropout prevention and school-based health programs. She worked with stakeholders to develop a new accountability system to track outcomes, measure progress and make program changes to improve results for low-income children and children of color. De Barros has also worked for the Center on Reinventing Public Education at the University of Washington, Children’s Home Society of Washington, the U.S. Senate and the U.S. Department of Labor.

This last one doesn't work for SPS but is with the Gates Foundation:

4)KY VU
The Broad Residency Class of 2004-2006
Current Organization: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Residency Placement: San Francisco Unified School District
M.B.A., Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, 2000
B.S., Mechanical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, 1992





Ky Vu currently serves as program officer for education for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Prior to joining the Gates Foundation, Vu served as director, state and federal programs for the San Francisco Unified School District where he also served as special assistant to the superintendent during his Residency. Prior to joining the district, Vu taught Algebra and Advanced Placement Calculus at Leadership High School, a public charter high school in San Francisco. He has also served as a management consultant with Ernst and Young and A.T. Kearney and held various marketing strategy positions with Charles Schwab & Co. Vu began his career as a U.S. naval officer. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and a master’s degree in business administration from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

All this and more can be found here:

http://www.broadresidency.org/

beansa said...

So. From the info I got from the Broad Residency website, it looks like we've had these residents for a while now, huh?

Glad to know the powers that be are keepin the people informed!

Gack.

MathTeacher42 said...

I checked out her linked in profile thing above - I googled her high school 'media academy' but I'm not confident I have the correct place.

Her list of accomplishments looks like the stuff I read on the Board Foundation, and it looks like much of the blather I read about during our great education ... ha ha ha ... reform legislation a few months ago.

Big Words, Big Sentences, Big Paragraphs, Big Tomes

NO Details About HOW to implement any ideas, NO MONEY to pay for the non-existant details.

(well... in their defense, if you have no clue what your ideas cost in time, hence you have no clue about what you're going to do, why bother paying for it?)

She's young enough - maybe she REALLY wants to change how things work, instead of just creating more powerpoint blather ???

Bob Murphy

dan dempsey said...

Hey Mr. Murphy you said:

"Big Words, Big Sentences, Big Paragraphs, Big Tomes

NO Details About HOW to implement any ideas,"


I thought you were talking about Cleveland STEM, which was approved by a 6-1 vote.

Harium said he was a big STEM advocate but voted no.... because of far too much uncertainty in this situation.

As always Harium sees through the "Big Words, Big Sentences, Big Paragraphs, Big Tomes" and mindless blather to analyze what he is actually voting on.

If anyone has pie-in-the-sky for sale, I have a suggestion for 6 potential customers.

dan dempsey said...

The blather you are not hearing about:
http://www.k12.wa.us/Communications/PressReleases2009/WASL-HSRelease.aspx

Go to the above right to get the Presentation Materials .pdf

On page two you will find class of 2011 WASL Math pass rate 45.26%
which is a drop of over 4 points from last year.

Without adequate k-8 math preparation .. high school math improvement is impossible.
Currently 90+% of WA elementary kids are in some reform math program about 66% are in either Everyday Math or TERC/Investigations. About 65+% of middle schoolers are in Connected Math.

The Adoption Committees do not even read the National Math Advisory Panel's materials ...
Pure math insanity is what is produced largely out of ignorance.

By the way on the Broad resident discussion Brad Bernetek was the SPS principle data cherry-picker in helping CAO Santorno push through the worthless Everyday Math adoption.

When I pointed out the EDM-Connected math failure in Denver Brad's comment was there is nothing written that this failure was due to the instructional materials, it could have been other factors.

Well now we know one of the other factors is not altitude. The EDM-Connected Math combo does not work at 5000 feet or at Sea Level.

Let us have one more round of applause for Dr. Bergeson's twelve years of math leadership shenanigans. Oh her entire math team is still working at OSPI.

The Best of Luck to new CAO Enfield in her attempt to navigate through this embedded mine field and produce an adequate or better education for ALL students in math.

What a refreshing change that would be if she can pull that off.

reader said...

My questions are really along the lines of -what as this foundation's cadre accomplished for students? Specifically, are students with disabilities better off where these people have been in the mix, are middle managers effective and present and making decisions that assist building teams and families in working together? Aside from the big picture politics of the Broad Foundation, could anyone give specifics as to what has been accomplished by the Broad Foundation people in concrete terms especially in bringing our school districts' historically 2nd class citizens in from the margins? I am also interested in what families' experiences have been with the new CAO in other districts.

Chris S. said...

Anonymous, I agree. I want to see some data that the Broad Foundation's projects actually "positively impact student achievement", close the achievement gap, improve efficiency, etc. Preferably peer-reviewed. They've been at it long enough - sounds like there should be some numbers from Portland at least.

Sahila said...

Sorry for the cross-posting....

I think the time is ripe to focus on the Broad Foundation influence operating in the District.... this connection, which is becoming firmly entrenched and widespread, seems to be at the root of much of this undesirable path we're on... expose and maybe work to remove that influence and we might have a chance to change track....

Re: Direct action... my posting of the Air New Zealand body-painting ad - honesty and transparency - brought forth a suggestion from Christ Stewart on the Alt Schools Coalition group that we turn up at Board meetings with scripted lessons painted on our bodies...

My response below:

"Three cool ideas.... body-painted protests at board meeting(s) - really like that, Chris - maybe you should post this idea to all the other networks and to the Blogs - mass complaint campaign, rolling school boycotts... there's enough in that to get some media coverage... what other really creative, funny, quirky ideas can we come up with?

Thinking about planning and implementation of some or all of the above...

I'm willing to have a meeting at my house (in Greenwood) to get started on this during the weekend 18/19 July... my preference would be on the Sunday afternoon 19th, from noon - 2.30pm, leaving enough time for family fun later.

Happy to have kids come - they can play, watch movies etc.

We could start the complaint campaign at that meeting - would just need to print/photocopy large quantities of complaint forms, I can provide envelopes and some stamps...

Let me know if anyone is interested and we'll take it from there..."

Namaste
Sahila
email: metamind_universal@yahoo.com , telephone: 206 297 7511
------------------------------------
------------------------------------
From: Chris Stewart
Subject: [ASC] Re: A New Take on Transparency and Honesty - Kiwi-style!!!

OK, let's show up at the board meeting in body paint! Maybe with
scripted lessons painted all over...

dj said...

I would assume that if the Broad Foundation is paying half the salary, this is a fellow we would not have were it not for the Broad Foundation. Paying half of the salary for an administrator who is producing gains for students in the district doesn't necessarily sound like a bad public/privatish partnership.

Except for one thing. Where can I go for data that demonstrate to me what paying half the salary for these fellows has brought to the district? I have been a fellow (not an education fellow) before; you often have lots of projects. But what can the central office point to that has improved schooling for Seattle's students that we would not have had but/for these fellows? That's my question. Which is not to say that I don't think all of the concerns about the Broad Foundation itself are or aren't well-founded -- I'm as suspicious as the next person -- but whatever the agenda of the organization may be, if we're paying for a fellow, I want to know what we're getting in return. Specifically.

Sahila said...

dj.... my concern would be that the fellow work on agendas that are sanctioned by the SPS community, not agendas that are being promulgated by the fellow's parent foundation...

I hate it that Broad people (hence Broad agendas) are being insinuated into SPS executive management in such a quiet, underhand, devious, 'under the radar' manner ... a very effective tactic on the part of the Foundation... not at all transparent and easy to spot and stop... and before we know it, we will be so far down this track that we wont have any wiggle room, sovereignty or autonomy left...

Anonymous said...

Are we running schools or a corporation? SPS is a bureaucracy, not a corporate entity. The viewpoint is different and the financial structure is different.It's amazing to me the way the Broad seems to just advertise for the position of a Resident, use anyone with some sort of business background, provide them with on the job training for a couple of years at a nice beginning salary and then put them in these positions of great influence, unbeknownst to the rest of us.

The person overseeing enrollment and demographics had a crucial role in the school closures.

We were constantly reminding SPS and the board about the demographics for the Central District and Capitol Hill areas, that according to the census bureau there is projected to be an increase of 50%-100% school aged children between 2005 and 2012 and yet they closed the only elementary school and junior high school in the area. They kept saying that our schools were under enrolled and yet now DeBell is talking about opening 4-5 schools in the north end, including Old Hay which they just closed.

SPS continually responded to our concern about a lack of schools in the central area by saying that they were using the numbers from the census bureau to make their determinations.

With Don Kennedy, our superintendent's buddy from SC, and people like Bernatek running all of the numbers, numbers that can be manipulated any way you want them to be or simply hidden, the only one coming out of this a winner is the Broad.

We really need to take back our public school schools here in Seattle.

reader said...

DJ, I agree with you. We need specifics about what is being accomplished for whom, and what has been accomplished and for whom in other districts. If the Broad Foundation is supposed to help create a better management cadre and improve services to students and families and teachers what evidence is there that it is actually making a difference? In our experience, knock knock knock at the door of middle management in this district and no one is home.

Anonymous said...

Sahila,

I agree with you. We need to get together, discuss the presence of the Broad in our school system and come up with some actions showing our concern.

Also now that we know the who's who of Broad graduates in SPS, it's time to focus on what they are doing and evaluate their performances ensuring that they are working in the best interest of our children and not that of the Broad or any other corporate interest.

reader said...

Dora, hasn't Mary Bass been calling for an audit of the demog/enrollment division of SPS?

owlhouse said...

Dj asked- "Where can I go for data that demonstrate to me what paying half the salary for these fellows has brought to the district?"

Here's a few more related questions-

How are residents placed with the district? Interview? Who initiates the process, Broad, SPS, the individual? Given that it is Broads expectation that residents stay on in the districts they go to serve- how much forethought is there in the need for permanent placement?

Let's get specific- Brad Bernatek. Was there an interview process? Open to the public? Did board members attend? After his 2 year residency, it appears he took over the position of the person he had interned with, Ramona Pierson. I've heard from others in the district who did not know this change in personal was on the way. Can anyone with more history in the district offer their memory of this transition?

The Broad Foundation and SPS have conflicting goals. We are a public agency, with democratically elected oversite, policies aimed at engaging and empowering participants. Last night at the board meeting, public testimony included a reminder that parents through PTAs, support schools by hiring teachers, purchasing supplemental material. In contrast, Broad believes in increased administration, privatization, data collection/interpretation and new tests to collect data. There is a philosophical difference in vision and approach- and we the public should know when and how these ideologues come to work for us.

Unknown said...

As I understand it, Ramona Pierson quit rather unexpectdly after several very loud, very public fights with her boss at the time. Brad Bernatek was not working for her at the time, he was working for the COO and stepped in because a lot of things were left in chaos.

Anyone able to confirm if SPS is paying any portion of these salaries?

suep. said...

Chaos Theory

Another troubling factor in all this is the Broad Foundation's stated objective (or M.O.) of "honing in on" troubled school districts that either are in bankruptcy or have been taken over by the city/mayor.

Neither of these conditions is currently true in Seattle.

In fact, despite a poorly run overstaffed central administrative office (full of Broad Residents, apparently -- which may explain its bloatedness!), Seattle's public schools, by and large, are quite strong, with some nationally recognized schools and programs. Yes, there are weak areas and inequities that should be addressed.

So how does Broad (rhymes with "toad") plan to make its case for a privatized takeover of Seattle Public Schools via charters if our district isn't asking for this?

It would, in theory, need to create an environment that is "ripe" (to use one of Broad's own terms) for charters to move in.

How does it do that?

Looking at all the mind-boggling, reckless, rushed and illogical decisions and changes made by this School District this past year under the leadership of Broad board member and graduate, Maria Goodloe-Johnson, with no clear benefits in sight, one might question this Superintendent's objectives for our District.

Are she and her admin staff (larded with Broadies) genuinely trying to improve Seattle Public Schools, make them strong and desirable for all the kids in the city and lure back the high percentage of private school attendees into the public system?

Will school closures that ignore demographic trends and community needs, teacher layoffs, mindlessly standardizing curricula, implementing a failed math curriculum, weakening alternative and highly capable schools, abolishing fresh cooked meals for middle and high schoolers in favor of central kitchen airplane food -- add up to a stronger, more desirable School District?

Or do these "reforms" create chaos and mistrust and weaken schools and parents' faith in the system, and potentially open the door to a public cry for the city to take over the School District? If so, Mission Accomplished, from the Broad perspective, and the next step would be to present the idea of privately run charters as a "solution."

This, of course, is just a theory -- a "Chaos Theory" if you will.

But it really has been difficult to see how Goodloe-Johnson's erratic, poorly executed "Plan for Excellence," which has disenfranchised parents, has little to no community buy-in, and has elements that seem shrouded in secrecy, is putting our kids and their schools on a positive, stronger path.

This is not a new story. There are always those who come from the corporate world who believe that the corporate way to run a business is applicable everywhere.

Well, there's ample evidence that that's just not true.

Our country just finished 8 years under the "leadership" of the first U.S. president with an MBA, and look where that landed us -- in two quagmires overseas and an economy in a tailspin such as we've not seen since the Great Depression.

We now have ample evidence of the for-profit, oversight-free "business models" of the Ken Lays and Bernie Madoffs, Phil Gramms, Kerry Killingers, etc. etc, of the world, and it has left our nation in ruins.

The Broad/Gates-types are the same kind of people who wanted to privatize Social Security. Thank God that didn't happen, for look where everyone's retirement savings would be now.

Above all -- and this is the heart of the matter for me and for many others on this blog I would venture to guess -- our children are not commodities. Their schools are not "enterprises." Their principals are not "CEOs."
Their learning is not a "profit" opportunity. (These are all terms quoted from Broad literature.)


Successful schools are collaborative, creative communities in which parents have a say and teachers are respected, principals are members of the team, and children are the primary focus.

(Sahila -- feel free to re-post my messages wherever you like.)

Sahila said...

gavroche - loved your last post - to the point, clear, logical, paints a very compelling picture of what's going on.... can you get the Times or PI to run it as an editorial? Maybe send it to the radio and tv stations, particularly the public broadcast systems? I feel I cant do that cos I'm not the author and they might want to follow up with you...

I will post it to Harium's blog, plus the Alt Schools Coalition, plus our own (AS#1)lists, and maybe it can go to ESP, Nora? I've tried and tried to get on their list but it never seems to happen!

WenD said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
WenD said...

Can we have a new thread devoted to the Broad Foundation? I'm intrigued by who they are and why they have established a foothold in Seattle. Looks like SPS has joined the inner circle. NYC, Philly. I'm sure MG-J is keen on winning the Broad Prize.

She has some interesting company on the Broad board, mostly from the corporate world. The newest member is former Bush Secretary of Ed. Margaret Spellings. Ever the George W protégé, she's famous for saying, "I talk about No Child Left Behind like Ivory Soap: It's 99.9 percent pure. There's not much needed in the way of change.” (I found this quote after Googling "Margaret Spellings" and "hack.")

Another notable board member is Louis Gerstner, former CEO of IBM, now with the Carlyle Group. I'm sure you're all familiar with the CG. Second largest private equity group in the world. We got yours, you didn't, seems to embody their goals. His latest idea is taxing capital gains at 80 % for short-term investments. Lou, of course, would be immune from this rule.

If the Broad Foundation is all about cultivating leadership in schools, Gerstner isn't really my idea of a leader, unless you seek a role model for corporate greed. He fired 60K employees from Big Blue and pocketed millions and got away with it. Stock manipulation is the sign of a true leader, especially when the SEC looks the other way.

I'm waiting to see exactly how Mr. Gerstner will put the equity back in education.

http://www.broadeducation.org/asset/419-tbc_board_announcement.pdf
Lists the rest of the board.

ConcernedSPSParent said...

Hi Sahila,
I'd certainly like to come along
and discuss the Broad influence on
the SPS. Do you think it would be
worth inviting Sherry 'Rubber Stamp' Carr?. Also (not trying to sidetrack
the agenda) I would find a quick
overview of the various groups
'interacting' to deliver education
direction enormously helpful - I'd
even offer to take notes and post:)

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous,

Yes, Mary Bass has mentioned having such an audit.

I think that we need to carefully examine at this point the enrollment numbers that caused this rush to close schools. I can tell by the budget numbers that a savings of $3M was hardly worth all the moves and closures that occurred this time around.

SPS could have saved far more than that by doing what so many other companies and public agencies have done and gone to a four day work week. We might even see some efficiencies with that schedule in place.

When the superintendent was asked on Weekday with Steve Shere about the option of savings by having employees go to a four day work week or some similar arrangement, DGJ said that it would only be a temporary fix and therefore was not an option. When she was asked if the $3M was a savings over a long period of time or just a one time fix, she said that it was only a one time savings. All that pain for so little gain.

You do have to wonder, was that complete imcompetence on the part of the superintendent and her team or part of the chaos theory that gavroche refers to.

Our superintendent also said that class size doesn't matter. Charter schools would offer smaller class sizes.

If school closures happened because of budget concerns, well, we saved little. If it had to do with enrollment, well, we have 1,200 students over the estimated amount enrolled for this fall, most of these students will be entering kindergarten. Just as the census bureau had projected.

Then why all of this chaos and pain? Together the Broads and the Gates provided our superintendent with $10M for doing such a wonderful job. Why couldn't that money been used to prevent the rif's or schools closings?

You just have to wonder.

dan dempsey said...

"You just have to wonder."
...

Sure do as Gates, Broad and MG-J are unlikely to provide any straight answers.

The answer I'd like is how many instructional coaches are running about?

At one time when the Budget was an issue there were going to be big cuts at Central Admin and no coaches unless specifically paid for out of grants. Guess there are no budget worries now as coaches seem to be abundant and central admin expands or am I wrong about that?

owlhouse said...

Still trying to figure out how Mr. Bernatek, and by extension how other foundation folks, come to be in permanent positions at SPS.

If Ms. Pierson's leaving left things in a bit of chaos, I understand someone needing to step in- but why Mr Bernatek, with so little time in the district? And at what point did this become a permanent position? Did the open position have to be internally or publicly posted? And, if his residency was in Research, Eval and Assessment- why was he in working under the COO and not Ms. Pierson in the first place?

I guess I'm just unclear about the process. I do think that Broad's influence and placement complicate matters. In trying to learn a little more, I found Charlie's comment from the New Strategic Plan post here at SSS in January of '08.


"Hey, here's an item from a recent District brochure: "An Overview of Accomplishments 2005-2006"

"Support from Gates and Broad Foundations. Received
an $800,000 Gates Foundation Grant to fund the strategic
implementation team, work on first round of closures, and
implement additional recommendations from the Community
Advisory Committee on Investing in Educational Excellence.
A grant-funded Broad Foundation resident is working on
strengthening strategic planning capacity in the district...

I think the money paid the salary for Brad Bernatek, an assistant to the COO. I wonder if the Broad Foundation is satisfied with the yield from this investment. Surely Mr. Bernatek provided them with some report of his impact and benefit for the District.

Mr. Bernatek apparently still works for the District. His title is "Special Support & Program Evaluation" in the Operations Division."

Charlie Mas said...

Actually, I'm something of a fan of Mr. Bernatek and his work. He usually presents good and valuable data and he is one of the few people I have seen within the District who knows how to work with data and interpret it.

While he has, in a few select cases - not at all in the bulk of his work, presented data in a way that, while true, isn't entirely honest and unbiased, he will acknowledge the bias if you confront him with it. I respect that.

owlhouse said...

I appreciate that Charlie. My questions are much more about process- as I don't have experience with Mr Bernatek.

So- how do foundations come to partner with SPS? Maybe we apply for grants, maybe they approach us, maybe there are connections between admin folks who have worked together in the past. I'm curious about the rules and roles- what has and hasn't worked historically. And, I'm not sure it's a good idea for foundation trained folks to join us as residents with or without the expectation of post-residency positions UNLESS there is a well known, widely understood and accepted partnership between the district and foundation. Broad's 4th Quarter EQ quotes Dr. GJ as saying she hopes to have 4 more Broad residents next year- that's a lot of influence. We should be clear on what it means, who it serves.

Tosca said...

@Gavroche,

Did you happen to read Naomi Klein's "Shock Doctrine?" Your Chaos Theory and her shock doctrine are very similar--create a completely unstable environment and do disorient the population so that the people with the agenda (Friedmanite economists/Broad Foundation surrogates) can swoop in and remake the landscape without any resistance.

Insightful and disturbing!

dan dempsey said...

In regard to grants and where they come from and why....

I just do not know anything about the appearance of a $756,000 grant to hire Education First.

Sure seems like help I would decline until I knew a lot more about who is providing the money.

For math expertise I see nothing worth buying from them.

wseadawg said...

Direct quotes from Broad's Website (4th Qtr. EQ) ref'd by Owlhouse:

New Broad Residents Jessica de Barros and Cordell Carter (Class of 2008–2010) who recently joined Seattle Public Schools, have also discovered that their work in the Seattle district requires all of their skills, talents, and knowledge.

“This is a great challenge,” said de Barros. “I’ve never had an experience like this.”

Carter, who has degrees in political science, policy, and law said, “I’m using my entire education, unlike any other job I’ve had previously. Education is so complex. I had no idea.”

Carter has appreciated the complexity, finding his work challenging, engaging, and rewarding. “I’m doing interesting work every day,” he said, “and doing something that has an effect on real people.”

Seattle’s Broad Residents areworking to transform Seattle Public Schools, and Goodloe-Johnson knows they will continue to help implement her reform vision and make a difference for Seattle schools. Does she want more Residents?

“Absolutely,” she said. “I want four next year.”

wseadawg said...

So for anyone who loves business analogies, let me ask this question: Why are we bringing in Broad Resident Newbies with no education background whatsoever? How on earth are they qualified in any way to have a job with a school district, besides Broad's influence and connections?

I don't care of each has 10 Harvard MBAs. Why should we parents tolerate their on-the-job training, while paying 1/2 their salary?

SPS has its head screwed on backwards! The true professionals in the classrooms are maligned as lazy, union-protected sloths while the administration is filling up with Broad Foundation Newbies who say things like "I had no idea" and "I've never had an experience like this."

I didn't realize Broad's connections means one can get a job in a major school district, with voters paying 1/2 the training wage (for the training wheels), with ABSOLUTELY NO EXPERIENCE REQUIRED! None. Zip. Nada. And the Super would like FOUR of them.

But what if parents, who have never been consulted about this, DO NOT want corporate CEO types invading the administration of our schools to further their own agendas?

Let's call it what it is: A Hostile Takeover of our schools by corporate interests. The same corporate interests that drove our economy into the ditch, if not the grave, and now think their greatness should be spread throughout our schools.

Enough already.

Anonymous said...

Amen and pass the potatoes, wseadawg.

It's great to see on this blog so much information and discussion about the Broad and the influence that they have already had on our school system.

I find it interesting that Gates and Broad provided money to SPS for a package of items including school closures in 2008. Since when would we need money to determine what schools should be closed and which should stay open? Why would it be their concern?

I have so many more questions than answers right now.

I'm beginning to think that these school closures were nothing but an exercise of moving chess pieces on a board. It didn't have anything to do with saving money or handling under enrollment as DGJ said it did. We saved $3M in the closures which is nothing and so far our district is over enrolled by 1,200 students for the fall. That means 1,200 students over what their initial estimate was.

They closed, threatened and marginalized several alternative programs, split APP, moved SBOC out of Queen Anne, closed AAA, etc. These programs are a very important part of SPS. These are the smaller schools that provide an alternative to the larger traditional schools (sounding familiar...as in charter schools?)and have been exceptionally successful. Why touch them? Someone told me recently that DGJ doesn't like small schools and that's why she is going after the alt ed programs. I don't think that's it at all. As far as the Broad is concerned, there should be only one alternative option to public schools and that is the charter school.

And Charlie, Mr. Bernatek might be a fine man but he does have all of the data in his hands and we know that data can be manipulated as easily as a CFO can manipulate the numbers.

"While he has, in a few select cases - not at all in the bulk of his work, presented data in a way that, while true, isn't entirely honest and unbiased, he will acknowledge the bias if you confront him with it."

So does that mean that we now have to follow everything and confront this person each time that he provides data to the public?

"Believe nothing, question everything"?

That might be the case for now. At this point I would say many of us are in that mode and we all need to be questioning everything now, among ourselves, to the board members and to the staff within SPS.

I have decided not only to speak in front of the board, basically just for public record, but also to start picking up the phone and calling people within the SPS structure when I have questions. There is so much to get to the truth about and we need to start doing that now.

And the chaos theory/Shock Doctrine does apply here. Make a mess of things, cause people pain and then allow people like the Broads to come in and save the day.

No way. Not here. Not now.

Charlie Mas said...

Dora Taylor asks "
So does that mean that we now have to follow everything and confront this person each time that he provides data to the public?
"

In short, yes.

But that's the way that it has always been and always will be.

dan dempsey said...

On school closures and Gates and Broad providing money.......

What is needed would be a study as to how to keep schools open by using non-SPS co-tenants at schools to keep all the schools open.

I thought Gates were the small schools folks. I guess only when it is the Gates idea.

The idea should be to keep schools as neighborhood schools to strengthen both families and community. I advocated for this and so did Harium during campaigning in 2007.

It is much easier for MG-J and the board to reactively close schools than pro-actively plan financially sound ways to keep schools open.

But then where would the charters be housed when that is slammed through?