Monday, October 02, 2006

Janey to intervene in DCPS run charters

It looks as if there's a pissing match brewing between DCPS and the District's charter schools. First, a few weeks ago Superintendent Janey went public with his plan to halt the granting of new school charters in the District. Now, it appears that he wants to micromanage all of the District's charter schools. According to charter school, however, he may not have the authority to.
Janey has authority over charter schools as chief state schools officer, a role typically held by a state school superintendent overseeing local school districts. He said he intends to introduce teacher training programs and quarterly assessments at the 42 troubled charter campuses overseen by both authorities. He also said he would monitor improvement plans drafted by principals and teachers and put one of the Board of Education charter schools on a year-round calendar.

"I want to get much more involved in the charter schools authorized by the Board of Education," Janey said in an interview. Peter G. Parham, Janey's chief of staff, later said the superintendent intends to intervene in all troubled charter schools.

"This will happen in October," Janey said. "We will have an approach consistent with what we do with [failing schools] in DCPS as a school system."

Robert Cane, executive director of Friends of Choice in Urban Schools, a charter school advocacy organization, questioned whether Janey has the legal authority to do that. The charter school law, he said, gives oversight power only to the authorizing board.

"This is illegal, and we'll fight against that," Cane said. Moreover, he added, "It is unethical for the superintendent to involve himself in the operation of a charter school with which he competes."

1 comment:

Ed Researcher said...

This is outrageous. Why bother having charter schools if the head of DCPS is going to insert himself in their affairs?