Friday, March 1, 2019

OPINION DUNCAN: ‘It Is Clear to Me That Mayoral Control Is by Far the Better Approach’ Than Elected School Boards | Chicago Sun-Times

Chicago schools have led nation in academic growth — under an appointed board | Chicago Sun-Times

DUNCAN: ‘It Is Clear to Me That Mayoral Control Is by Far the Better Approach’ Than Elected School Boards 


OPINION  Chicago schools have led nation in academic growth — under an appointed board

Polls suggest that a majority of Chicagoans favor an elected school board or some hybrid version of elected and appointed members.
Both candidates for mayor, Lori Lightfoot and Toni Preckwinkle, also have expressed a preference for one of these alternatives instead of a board fully appointed by the mayor.
I’d like to make the case that abandoning mayoral control would be a mistake, one with significant consequences for students.
OPINION
Arne Duncan join a roundtable discussion panel with representatives of Chicago area colleges and universities on how small high schools can enhance their academic curriculum by partnering with higher education institutions
Arne Duncan | Sun-Times file photo
Those who favor an elected or hybrid school board seem to want greater representation and accountability. When decisions like school closings are on the docket, people want to feel that their concerns are being considered. And when a school district chief commits fraud, or questions arise about how special education is being handled, we want accountability.
I not only understand those emotions and objectives, I share them. That said, it is clear to me that mayoral control is by far the better approach — not just for true accountability, but as means to accomplish what we all really want — schools that serve our children well.
First, concerns about the role of money and politics infiltrating our schools are real — more than $17 million was spent on recent school board elections in Los Angeles, and turnout for school board elections tends to be less than 10 percent. That may be why Chicago has never had an elected school board — it has always used some version of an appointment process.

The result of the appointment process is more accountability, not less. There is no question that Chicagoans know exactly who to blame or thank for school performance. Voters understand that whomever they elect will pick a school team they judge capable of overseeing the third-largest district in the country — a complex and critical undertaking that requires significant financial and CONTINUE READING: Chicago schools have led nation in academic growth — under an appointed board | Chicago Sun-Times



No comments:

Post a Comment