Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Next CEO an educator, business manager or Vallas? Makes little difference under mayoral control.

“I think Barbara Byrd Bennett's legacy is going to be she'll be remembered by educators and community members as the person who sold the mayor's schools closings,” --  CTU VP Jesse Sharkey.
Carol Felsenthal at Chicago Mag interviews Paul Vallas and comes away thinking he may be the man for the job. I come away thinking, what has Carol been smoking?

Actually, my blog was intrigued by the idea. It kept whispering to me, "Oh please, yes, yes. Bring him on. Especially now, right in the middle of the Byrd-Bennett/SUPES grand jury hearings."

I mean, the guy has been running one step ahead of the feds and grand jury hearings since he left Bridgeport, where he gave FUSE a fat no-bid consulting contract a la SUPES/Synesi.

I know I have at least 70 more Vallas exposés stored away in virtual SmallTalk file cabinets. A Vallas appointment, while a total disaster for public ed, as it was in Philly, N.O. and Bridgeport, would be a windfall for SmallTalk.

But then my brain answers my blog: "No way in hell will Rahm go there". Mr. Brain is right. My sources tell me that Rahm will go with another loyal bureaucrat/manager, turnaround type like CTA boss Forrest Claypool. Think Ron Huberman. What could possibly go wrong?

We got a hint of another Huberman type from last week's Tribune editorial. Remember the Mussolini reference? Make the trains run on time? Get it? However, even Mussolini would be just another bureaucrat serving totally at the pleasure of the mayor.

Meanwhile, the media debate is all about whether Rahm should appoint another career educator like BBB or J.C Brizard, or another non-educator business guy? I don't think it makes a damn bit of difference so long as either one, along with the hand-picked school board, are mere puppy dogs. It's mayoral control of the schools that's the real issue here. The fact that Rahm is shopping for Chicago's 6th CEO in 6 years following Huberman, Mazany, Brizard, Byrd-Bennett, and Ruiz, makes my point. Instability is the name of the game and when things go south, like a major scandal or a teachers strike, they are all easily replaceable.

We need an elected school board and an end to autocratic rule over the schools.

1 comment:

  1. Mike, I totally agree w/your comment on the Chicago Magazine interview. And what's up with that rather saintly looking picture of Paul? He's anything but--a perfect example of the adage "absolute power corrupts absolutely," he (according to some CTU people I know who'd worked w/him) started out as rather shy, modest & possessive of good ideas.
    But, after Chicago, he went on to ruin school systems in New Orleans, Philadelphia, attempted the same in Bridgeport (where he was run out of town) & "lemon danced" back here, as our back-stabbing, labor-insulting Demoncrat governor tapped him as his running mate (a large part of why the ticket lost). Why, Vallas even visited post-earthquake Haiti w/Arne, just like carpetbaggers did in the south post Civil War--think they smelled fresh $$$. And, gee, the 2 of them could have SO improved Haiti's education system (well, first you do have to have electricity to run computers for Pear$on program$ & te$ting).
    Yes, Carol, what WERE you thinking? Please, Paul, do everyone a big favor & stay in Palos--& far away from CPS.


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