Though charter operators guard their autonomy, the trend toward clustering represents a kind of middle ground between traditional centralized school systems and stand-alone charters. The strategy allows "CMOs" -- nonprofit charter management organizations, which typically take on from two to ten schools -- to achieve economies unavailable to stand-alone charters, whose principals are often heavily burdened with business-side affairs.Rockford redux
Readers may remember back to March, when I wrote about Paul Vallas' virtual takeover of Rockford's public schools. After landing a huge consulting contract, while still holding down his job as New Orleans school boss, Vallas used his clout to push a Chicago-based chain of charter schools on the city. He also brought in his lieutenant in New Orleans, Lavonne Sheffield, to become the new Rockford superintendent, over the objections of several local board members.
Only one problem--Sheffield isn't certified. As if anyone needed proof that Vallas was calling the shots. Why else would an economic basket case like Rockford pay top-dollar for an uncertified supe?