Educators & Mayoral Control -- A Turning Point?

Thanks to Senate Education Committee staffer JD LaRock for pointing me to the latest issue of the Harvard Ed Review and its several pieces (Usdan, Hill, Simmons, Wong, Ucelli, Foley) on mayoral control. If the introductory overview (PDF) is any indication, perhaps educators' often visceral concerns about putting mayors in charge might finally be waning. The usual cautions are included, but the tone is generally positive. Things certainly seem to be more centrist than they used to be at the Harvard Ed School, which is now collaborating with the Business School on things like this case study about Chicago (PDF). Or, maybe it's just these particular characters. In any case, you gotta love the use of dropout data from Gary Orfield's Civil Rights Project as a possible justification for making a change in LA. That's like using Kozol to argue for NCLB.

UPDATE: No sooner was this posted than I came across an editorial from the LA Times that seems to be taking the whole mayoral control thing a little too far -- and comparing what's happened in Boston to what would happen in LA (Learning From Boston via ASCD). In reality, LA has much more to learn from New York and Chicago, comparably large districts. Even then, Mayor Villagairosa will have much less power over LAUSD than Bloomberg and Daley.


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