The next superintendent will inherit a divided district with a good amount of resources, poor management, and a great deal of potential.
What stood out? An encouraging recommitment to English language learners. It always sounds good anyway. A caller asked the question about black student achievement and why nobody seems to care or focus on it. Trustee Solis routinely answers this question the same way, but theres truth in it. While the assumption is that because he's Latino he's biased and that this bias is exacerbated by the overwhelming majority of students being Latin@, he's right that DISD has dozens of languages represented in its classrooms. It sounded genuine to me.
No surprises from Trustee Cowan. The three Cs. Calm, cool, collected. No fireworks, just an hour of Cowan. He did raise one eyebrow claiming that it may take a decade or more to see the fruits of the Miles era reforms. Many opponents would say we've waited long enough and characterize it as another attempt to cover for Miles, but for me it was a perfectly reasonable middle of the road response. Sure. Might take time to prove one way other the other if the reforms were good or not. Had he skipped that talking point, Cowan's comment that we need to respect and listen to our veteran teachers would have gotten the emphasis it deserves. That's real Cowan. Committed to kids and teachers.
Rena Honea injected her opinions about listening to teachers and stopping what she calls experimentation on our kids. The bigger question is what she and her organization do for teachers in Dallas. the popular opinion is that teachers pay into it and get nothing in return. AFT doesn't have the same teeth in Dallas that it does other places. That's a fact. What I anticipate and look forward to seeing is AFT trying to reassert itself now with the Dallas education scene a bit unstable and ripe for organizations that try to bring teachers together.
Big takeaway? All three of these folks care about our students. They disagree over the best way to do so, but none of these people are just in it for themselves as they are sometimes portrayed.
Biggest question? When are yall coming on our show?