Korsmo’s news roundup: How much specialer will it get?

Did I over-deliver on the salutation?  I think I watched a little too much American Idol this week. Or maybe I was thinking of all the excitement we feel here for our Schools that Work Contest.  Anywho… for those of you keeping track of the edu-news, and who among you isn’t, here ‘tis;

Budgees: One week in to our special session it’s becoming something very special indeed. Budget writers agree: no cuts to education. Game over, right? Not so fast, there, Sparky. The rest of the issues that went unresolved as of adjournment on March 9th are, shall we say, still bubbling. Those include charter schools – tucked nicely into the Republican Senate budget – which the Governor is threatening to veto and a few other not-so-small items. The Gov admonished the R’s (and a few D’s) for “dealing in public” after they held a budget presser and implored the negotiations to return to the proverbial “table. ” I think she was pretty clear in saying, “get your jobs done and then go home.” But it remains unclear how long this special session will drag on or how much specialer it will get.

Poli-Sci: Meanwhile, Washington style politics being what they are – and if you can describe that in 30 words or less, I’ll buy the first round -the debate over whether the Democrats are reform school enough rages on.  Personally, and no one’s asking me, this discussion is long overdue here. Thank a small pink unicorn for the arrival of Democrats for Education Reform.

Just Super: Even as yet another school district hones in on its choice for a new Superintendent, Seattle is sorting through its search “process.” Originally limiting “stakeholders” to the PTSA and school district employees, the School Board has decided that they will allow for broader community perspective after all. But only at the last minute.  To meet with the three finalists. And, they can’t vote.  There isn’t anything pithy enough to say about this that doesn’t offend the process-minded sensibilities of most Seattleites. Except. Governance Reform, anyone?

The Other Stuff:

  • Eleven community and technical colleges prove that institutions can play a meaningful role in preparing students for Washington’s jobs.
  • For a peek inside Washington’s successful quest for Race to the Top Early Learning funds, look (in part) to the kindergarten readiness section of the application, where Washington killed it. Take that, Delaware.
  • Speaking of RTTT, the Quality Rating systems required by applicants gets a look-see by the National Women’s Law Center.
  • If you like your Ed Reform to talk about accountability and evaluation systems, you’ll love this. And this. And this.
  • If you believe that new bureaucracies inspire innovation, you’ll love this.  And then you should drink this.
  • And if you just can’t get enough about the ways in which humans and fruit flies are similar, you’ll love this.

That’s it. And a bag of chips. Have a great weekend and thanks for all you do to support our kids.

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  1. Melissa Westbrook March 17, 2012

    “Originally limiting “stakeholders” to the PTSA and school district employees”. Nope.

    They added three more groups to that committee that did interviews with the consultants about questions to ask the finalists and I believe LEV was one of them and brought multiple people. Must have slipped LEV’s mind.

    The Focus Group committee of about 25 people – a fairly diverse group across the entire spectrum of education thought in this city – will interview the 3-5 finalists. Unfortunately, no one else can attend to listen nor will it be televised.

    I’m not sure where Chris gets her info but that committee WILL vote and pass on their recommendations to the secondary committee of Board members, PTSA, SEA, PASS, Central Adm and Local 609.

    The Board will then make their selection as is their duly-elected duty.

    That none of us gets to know who the finalists were, hear them speak or know why the ultimate person is chosen is not the best way to pick a Superintendent (at least Highline and Bellevue had public community meetings with finalists including Dr. Enfield). But this is what the Board, under their governance rights, has chosen to do.


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