- Veteran teacher and administrator Dave Taylor will take over as superintendent of Dayton Early College Academy schools this summer when long-time leader Judy Hennessey retires. Kudos to Judy for all that she has accomplished in building DECA into the strong and successful institution that it is, and best wishes to Dave for a long and productive tenure at the helm. Parents, students, and the whole Dayton community have much to show—and will have much more going forward—for the hard work and tenacity of these two educational leaders (against some long odds) over the years. (Dayton Daily News, 6/23/20) Cristo Rey High School in Columbus is getting a new boss this summer as well, but from a far less likely source. Joseph Patrick is a CPA by training and has had a long career auditing the books of organizations like…Cristo Rey. His detailed knowledge of the Catholic school’s operations, and his strong support for its mission to help low-income students of color achieve at the highest possible academic level, learn through hands-on internships with business and non-profit partners, and to be prepared for college and career upon graduation is likely what won him the job. Congratulations to Joseph and the entire Cristo Rey family. (Columbus Business First, 6/24/20)
- Speaking of school choice (were we?), here’s another of those pre-pandemic stories from The 74, this time looking at Fugees Academy, a network of schools geared to supporting immigrant and refugee children who have landed in the U.S. from across the globe. This story also looks to be based on a late-October visit to Columbus. The school, its leader, and its mission all sound awesome—and we’ve talked about them in the Bites before. Unfortunately, a lot of the oxygen in this story is taken up by national political talk, and next to no time is spent on the structure (and future plans) of the Fugees system, which should probably take center stage if you ask me. The academies, currently operating in Atlanta and Columbus, are private schools. It is noted that the Georgia school is supported by fundraising but that the Ohio school is “funded through a long-standing voucher program that originally targeted students attending failing public schools but that lawmakers expanded in 2013 to low- and middle-income families.” It would be interesting to find out which vouchers the kids are using, seeing as how many Columbus area district schools are eligible due to their long-standing poor academic performance, and how much fundraising/philanthropy is involved here as well. Well, interesting to me at least. We are also told that the Atlanta academy is in the process of becoming a charter school and that expansion plans include Indiana, Florida, and Missouri (where, we are told, there is “a favorable charter law.”) Yowza. So much to unpack…. (The 74, 6/23/20)
- For some reason, the state teachers’ unions want the state—and Governor DeWine in particular—to have the final say in how schools will reopen in the fall, as opposed to local school boards. I’m not entirely convinced by the reasons they have given for their preference. (Gongwer Ohio, 6/24/20)
- Perhaps the unions are worried about how well those decisions will be made at the local level. How can you blame them when one district which has had demonstrable trouble carrying out even regular school to a decent level tells you, “We try to stay five steps ahead of the state.”? (Toledo Blade 6/25/20) I’m pretty sure these guys aren’t any great shakes at regular school either; AND they seem confused as to how many feet make six. (Dayton Daily News, 6/24/20) I’m also pretty sure that, even if it comes down to a local decision, reopening schools should not be up to these particular guys. Just who is running the show up there these days? (WKBN-TV, Youngstown, 6/23/20) The first two districts being humbly and gently twitted above by your humble clips compiler have this week announced their intentions to set up a fully online school next year for parents who might want that. So, too, will this much smaller northeast Ohio district. They are the only ones to publicly suggest that, with it, they “hope to bring some students back who may have gone to a charter school”. In the spirit of competition of course. (Akron Leader, 6/25/20)
Did you know you can have every edition of Gadfly Bites sent directly to your Inbox? Subscribe by clicking here.