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

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Wake County's Anti-Diversity Board Majority Ponder Superintendent's Resignation

Photo: TAKAAKI IWABU - tiwabu@newsobserver
What do you get when institutionalized racism at the national level intervenes to buy a school board in order to destroy the nation's most successful school integration and diversity program? Keep an eye on Wake County, NC, and you will see the perfect case study unfolding before our eyes.

One thing you can obviously get is a righteously indignant superintendent who is not afraid to challenge the anti-diversity racist majority on the Wake County School Board. From the News Observer:

Wake County Schools Superintendent Del Burns could be out of a job as soon as Tuesday following his public criticism this week of the new school board majority's agenda.

The board hastily scheduled a special closed-session meeting for Tuesday to discuss whether to remove Burns, who has accused the new majority of engaging in "partisan political gamesmanship." For about $100,000, school board members could approve a payout that would allow them to immediately remove Burns ahead of his announced June 30 resignation date.

"Historically, when have you heard the CEO of a company publicly undermining the authority of his board?" said Debra Goldman, vice chairwoman of the school board. "At this point, you need to look at cutting your losses."

But school board member Kevin Hill, of the board minority, said it would be a mistake to remove Burns so soon. A former teacher and principal, Hill worries what would happen without Burns at the helm of the administration.

"I would hate to lose his direction and guidance with the system before we have the opportunity to bring a new superintendent on board," Hill said Friday. "Even if we were not able to hire a new superintendent by June 30, that would give us time to bring in a well-qualified interim."

There's no deputy superintendent because Burns eliminated the position after he was named superintendent in 2006. Three of his most senior administrators who might be asked to fill in are Chief Area Superintendent Danny Barnes, Chief Academic Officer Donna Hargens and Chief Business Officer David Neter.

Relations fray quickly

The relationship between Burns and the new board majority has rapidly deteriorated since Tuesday, when Burns issued a stinging surprise resignation announcement. He said he could no longer work "in all good conscience" for the school district he has served for nearly 30 years. Soon after the announcement, board chairman Ron Margiotta said he would try to talk Burns out of resigning.

Things worsened Thursday as Burns explained his reasons for resigning in a series of media interviews. He said he disagreed with the direction of the board's new Republican-backed majority, which wants to end the school system's diversity policy in favor of neighborhood schools. Burns said that would lead to a system of rich and poor schools. . . .

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous5:08 PM

    David Neter is a major weasel and should be the last person to help with any transition. He himself is capable of having created the rift between the superintendent and board, blinded by his own schools-are-a-business ambitions. Neter has proven time and again that he cares nothing about the care and welfare of our Wake County children.