"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Monday, May 25, 2009

Obama Taps Former Broad Fellow for High-Ranking Position; Ex-Gates Officials Make Room for Her at the DOE

     The Obama Department of Education already contains a number of former Gates officials.  Wouldn't it be a more well-rounded department if there were, say, some Broad fellows?  But just a few days ago...  (From the White House press room, May 19, 2009):
Thelma Melendez de Santa Ana, Nominee for Assistant Secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education, Department of Education
Dr. Thelma Melendez is currently serving as the Superintendent of Schools in the Pomona Unified School District in Pomona, CA. Her work on improving teaching and learning, and accelerating student performance, also includes work with the Stupski Educational Foundation and the Annenberg Foundation. She has written numerous articles for national education publications, and is an accomplished speaker on the role of school administrators, the achievement gap, women in education, and the issues of race and class.  She earned a Bachelor of Arts, Cum Laude, at UCLA, a Doctorate in Philosophy at the University of Southern California, participated in several graduate programs in school administration and leadership, and was a Broad Urban Superintendents Academy fellow. [My bold]
As the Assistant Secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education, Melendez will report to Duncan about "all matters relating to elementary and secondary education."  Her training as a Broad Fellow will come in handy as she advises Duncan on  No Child Left Behind; maybe she'll help Arne come up with a new name for the law while he's trekking across the country on his Magical Listening Tour.  


  1. Did she take a different superintendent's training? The one I know of is not anywhere near 18 months long. I quote from the Broad website:

    Academy Fellows keep their current jobs while attending seven extended
    weekend training sessions around the country that cover CEO-level skills in the best practices in education reform and leadership.

    Those are 4-day weekends. Or in other words 28 days or less of training. Though they are expected to seek people out to talk to and to do some reading between the sessions.

  2. Kenny Libby5:22 PM

    The Daily Bullletin cites an 18 month program in this article:

    The Broad Foundation says it is a 10 month program with the 7 extended weekends that you cite:

    Regardless, Melendez clearly was part of the Broad program. 28 days or 18 months - she is still taking in information from Broad's program and listening to the billionaire's sales pitch.