With all that is happening in terms of education reform on a national level, not to mention what has been transpiring in our own backyard, is it time for Norwalk parents and taxpayers to consider a NEW governance structure? The current one doesn’t appear to be working and many would argue that is hasn’t for at least a decade, maybe two. One need only attend one of the regular Board of Education meetings or look to the constant newspaper headlines to view a (still) dysfunctional Board of Education (regardless of how many elections are held and which political party is in charge.) This situation, coupled with a revolving door of frustrated or failed superintendents has some of us asking, “Is there another way?” Increasingly, many reform minded urban-suburban school districts are turning to their respective state’s department of education or mayoral offices to take control. Three factors that have generally contributed to this sort of a measure point to:
- Persistent lack of improvement in student achievement
- Financial inefficiencies
- Financial waste without academic results
Below are 3 different reports that highlight the pros and cons of exploring different governance structures that came out of The Thomas B. Fordham Institute Center For American Progress Conference last December, 2011.
Re-Imaging Education Governance: An International Perspective By Sir Michael Barber
The Failures of U.S. Education Governance Today By Chester E. Finn, Jr. & Michael J. Petrilli
Governance Challenges To Innovators Within the System By Michelle Davis