The NY Times Editorial page reported on 5/27 that over the last five years, more than half have of the city's principals have left their jobs. According to the Times, "A city system that once viewed educators with even 10 years' experience as too green to lead a school has grown increasingly dependent on young people — some still in their 20's — who have spent relatively little time in the school system." I imagine similar situations exist in most urban school districts. In desperate times, people do desperate things.
According to a story from today's Dallas Morning News, entrepreneur Randy "I Don't Know Anything About Education, But I Try to Hire People Who Are Respected" Best and former Secretary of Education Rod "The NEA Is a Terrorist Organization and Let Me Tell You About My Latest Educational Miracle" Paige and Reid "I've Never Met a College of Education I Didn't Want to Blow Up" Lyon have joined forces to form ACE, The American College of Education. Looks like our prayers for more qualified principals have been answered. ACE is starting off in Chicago. But you can bet your boots they're licking their chops to penetrate the nation's largest educational market in NYC. In desperate times, people do desperate things.
A big bear hug to Best, Paige, and Lyon for working a deal in Chicago that allows them to use public school classrooms for their for-profit venture. I love the smell of tax-payer financed public space going to private corporations. It smells like . . . profit margins. ACE expects to be generating $4.6 million in revenues annually by 2009. And it expects a profit margin of around 21 percent.
A big shout out to Lyon for upbraiding professors in colleges of education who teach things that do not synch with his . . . I mean the NRP's insistence that phonics-heavy instruction is the way to go. You can bet that none of the ACE employees will be so brazen as to question Lyon's roar.
Dr. Barbara Radner, director of the Center for Urban Education at DePaul University, which is a part-owner of ACE, said ACE's standardization is an interesting alternative to traditional academic freedom.
"Standardization is an interesting alternative to freedom." Orwell could not have said it better himself.
Yes, Reid. There is a knowable truth out there. And, gosh darn it, we're gonna teach it . . . whether they like it or not.
Monday, May 29, 2006
Got Principal Shortage? Call Best, Paige, and Lyon
at 11:27 AM
Peter Campbell is an educator, academic technologist, and parent. He holds a BA from Princeton University and an MA from New York University. He has been involved directly or indirectly in education for more than 25 years. He currently works for Blackboard, Inc. as a Regional Sales Manager in the Collaborate division. Before joining Blackboard, Peter served as the Lead Instructional Designer and the Director of Academic Technology at Montclair State University in New Jersey. Immediately prior to his job at Montclair, Peter served as the Product Manager for an educational start-up (Learn Technologies Interactive). In this role, he oversaw the design and development of a K-12 learning management system, e-learn.com. His passion for education was forged back in 1987. He began teaching for The Princeton Review, then moved to Tokyo and taught English at a Japanese high school for two years. He later moved to New York City, where he worked as an adjunct in the speech department at Manhattan Community College. He went on to teach writing at the U of Missouri in 1995, and it was there that his interest in educational technology was born. Views expressed here are solely those of Peter.