RCSD takeover? Tell us what you think

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In a Rochester Beacon column posted on April 25, I argued that the persistent dysfunction of the district’s administration was beyond the powers of the local community to repair and that a fundamental shift in the powers governing the education of our city’s children was urgently required. That sentiment did not originate with me, of course, and it was reinforced by comments made by Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren at the Beacon’s education forum on May 13. 

Reports now suggest that Andrew Brown, vice chancellor of the New York State Board of Regents and Warren are supporting a state takeover of Rochester’s City School District. As reported by the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle, the plan under consideration would replace the elected Rochester Board of Education with a body appointed by the state Board of Regents. The Commissioner of Education, Mary Ellen Elia, would appoint and supervise the superintendent. 

What do you think? I’ve drafted a brief survey with a series of statements in support of specific proposals presented in the forum. 

Please note: The statements are designed to elicit an opinion. Each statement makes the case in favor of the specific initiative. As a respondent, you are invited to agree or disagree and to elaborate on your opinion.

Click here to respond to the survey or click on the QR code below.

Next week I’ll report on the results of the survey and offer my own analysis of each of the ideas presented at the Beacon forum.

2 thoughts on “RCSD takeover? Tell us what you think

  1. The Distinguished Educator’s reports, the Attorney General’s report on the death of Trevyan Rowe, the Comptroller’s report on financial disarray and waste in the district, the Stanford report on the lowest 3rd through 8th grade academic growth in the nation even though we have one of the highest Kindergarten-ready rates in the nation, are all an indictment of our board and our system. We can remove the board and have the state appoint a new, 5 person volunteer board, or continue killing almost all of our most vulnerable children’s futures.

  2. The Distinguished Educator, the Attorney General, the Comptroller, the Stanford report and other statistical and qualitative research documents the current crisis and demands fundamental change. What has been missing is research on how and why the district declined so precipitously and dramatically even as those responsible for governance asserted and implemented agendas for reform. The community is filled with people who attended, graduated, taught in, administered and participated in a city school district that was successful on many fronts before the slow but steady downturn. Policies and practices began to serve political and economic agendas at the expense of professional knowledge, experience and achievement. Repeated reform efforts failed to effect a shift in power to focus on professional educational practices. That history has been ignored. It will be critical to attend to how we got here in order to navigate our way out.

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