Friday, January 05, 2007

Fenty's got a plan (part 1)

Mayor Fenty has reveled his plan to seize control of the District's public schools. In a Thursday morning press conference attended by all nine DC council members the Mayor introduced his 49 page District of Columbia Public Education Reform Amendment Act of 2007. The Post was there.
Fenty's 48-page legislative proposal, which was prepared over the past two months, describes significant changes. The bill would give line-item budget control to the council and consolidate responsibility for all charter schools in the District -- which are overseen by two organizations -- under a sole entity, the D.C. Public Charter School Board.

The school construction authority would be headed by a chief executive appointed by the mayor and would be charged with speeding up the city's school modernization effort, which Fenty and others have said is too slow. It also would oversee routine maintenance and repairs. The authority would carry out a decision by Fenty and the "school chancellor" or superintendent to close about 20 underenrolled schools identified in School Superintendent Clifford B. Janey's master facilities plan.
As you can imagine, the members of the Board of Education are none too happy about Fenty's plan.
Within hours, new Board of Education President Robert C. Bobb criticized the plan and threatened to resign if it is approved.

"Taking the board and making it an advisory board is not something we embrace," said Bobb, joined by three board members during a news conference at the board's headquarters in Northeast. "I did not run to serve in an advisory capacity."
More on Bobb here.

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