Saturday, November 26, 2005

Readings

My former employer released a report http://www.tntp.org/, discussing how contractual rules concerning staffing deadlines and seniority hurt (mostly) urban school districts serving (mostly) under-resourced, under-taught students. The school district I worked last summer had an early July retirement date. Count it off on your fingers -- that's six weeks before the start of the new school year! I cannot believe there are very many competent, experienced teachers still looking for work in early August. And when I mean many, there were vacancies in multiples of a dozen in this particular district.

This report illustrates how a lack of power and control at the site level re staffing can be extremely damaging. I shake my head whenever people commiserate about principal power, because truly, they have very little. Can you think of equivalent top-level managers with so little control over hiring, firing, and retention? This is an area where charter schools have gotten it right, and where changes clearly need to be made.

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