Friday, July 1, 2016

With Kaya Henderson leaving, Bowser has a decision to make about the future of D.C. schools - The Washington Post

With Kaya Henderson leaving, Bowser has a decision to make about the future of D.C. schools - The Washington Post:

With Kaya Henderson leaving, Bowser has a decision to make about the future of D.C. schools

With D.C. Public Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson announcing that she plans to step down in the fall, Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) has a tough decision to make: Does she select someone who has worked under Henderson to replace her, or does she go outside the city to find the school system’s next leader?
Henderson unexpectedly announced Wednesday that she would leave after more than five years as chancellor and nearly a decade after she became joined the effort to carry out an aggressive set of urban education reforms. Bowser immediately tapped John Davis, the school system’s chief of schools, to serve as interim chancellor beginning Oct. 1 and said a national search for a permanent replacement will begin later this year.
Henderson has been credited with leading a troubled and under-enrolled school district through rapid improvements with test scores improving, graduation rates jumping and with more academic and extra-curricular options available in the city’s schools.
But critics argue that Henderson’s achievements — and the reforms initiated by her predecessor, Michelle Rhee — have not reached the city’s neediest students. The school system’s national standardized test scores have been among the fastest-improving in the nation, but there are still stark achievement gaps between white and black and wealthy and poor students.
Whom the mayor appoints could signal whether Bowser wants to continue along Henderson’s reform path or try a new approach aimed at lifting the city’s poor and minority students.
“Going with an outsider risks the possibility of changing up the agenda and the direction,” said Michael Casserly, executive director of the Council of the Great City Schools. “It’s not unheard of that you could swap out the people and keep the same agenda, but you’ve got to be very strategic and thoughtful and deliberate about doing that.”
City law requires the mayor to assemble a review panel of teachers, parents and students to help her in selecting the chancellor; the panel will relay recommendations to the mayor for consideration. City law also requires that the mayor give “great weight” to recommendations With Kaya Henderson leaving, Bowser has a decision to make about the future of D.C. schools - The Washington Post:

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