Monday, September 17, 2007

Superintendent Everitt Gives APS Board A Scooby Snack

We're roughly six weeks into implementation of the grand experiment known as "APS Principal Shuffle 2007", so it's still too early to assess the damage/improvement done to individual schools by all the switching. We'll give that a semester at least.

But it's not too early to respond to APS Superintendent Beth Everitt's new, really keeno, idea regarding communication in such matters. As you may recall, the biggest problem with last Spring's announcement that several principals would change jobs was that individual school communities (parents, students, teachers) were completely left out of the decision-making process.

So, naturally, Dr. Everitt focuses her attention on (as the Journal headline reads this morning):

Everitt to Notify Board of Hires

Yes, you read that right. As Dr. Everitt sees it the problem wasn't involving the community, it was not letting APS School Board members know about the principal changes ahead of time. And now she's correcting that, even if the APS Board members interviewed for the story don't really seem to want such information. As Board President Paula Maes equivocatingly put it,
"I didn't take it as she was trying to get our approval," Maes said. "We have no business doing that."

Exactly. Meanwhile, no mention of the real stakeholders at the school level and whether the Superintendent will ever involve them in the process. Stupid meddling, pesky school-level stakeholders. Seriously, Everitt and APS bigwigs often sound like those bad guys on the old "Scooby Doo" show, getting away with putting sheets on their heads and scaring everybody as they act like ghosts at the old run-down mill until the pesky, meddling kids come around asking questions and solve the case.

Well, Everitt doesn't have to worry about pesky, meddling kids asking questions. She is instead worried about a bunch of old people with no direct involvement in the "old mill" (that's the individual school for anyone unable to follow the arcane logic of this pitiful analogy) at all.

As a professional resident at an "old mill" affected by "Principal Shuffle 2007", I'll give some time before evaluating the impact of the change on my school. I don't have to wait to grade the relevance, importance and public relations acumen of "Everitt to Notify Board of Hires". That gets an F, F for phony attention to the wrong problem.


Ched MacQuigg said...

excellent and hard hitting essay; although I am just a little concerned that you are so conversant with Scooby plot lines (just teasing).

Anonymous said...

Last month, board members complained that they were the last ones to learn about new principal hires and were not told when a principal in their district had left.

Please..... Just because Berna had to find out about the Taylor situation from a blog! Would someone slip that woman a no-doze. Isn't it their job to be awake enough to visit the schools in their district? Or maybe they could return parents phone calls and find out that way.