Tuesday, April 28, 2009

McGinley Moves to Retain Control of NCHS

NCLB strikes again: North Charleston High School Faces Drastic Reforms.

You see, if CCSD could ignore what's happening at North Charleston High School, as it did in the good old days prior to NCLB's demands that schools make real, measured progress, no restructuring would be called for. Even though the reporter has written ad nauseum on CCSD's responses to NCLB requirements, she still doesn't know (or pretends she doesn't) that once a school reaches NCLB's point of no return, one of five possibilities must ensue:
In particular, schools that fail to make adequate yearly progress (AYP) in the percentage
of children meeting grade level standards for five consecutive years must engage in restructuring to improve student learning. All five restructuring options are called alternative governance arrangements in the law, and thus are intended to change how failing schools are led and controlled. NCLB restructuring options include the following:
Chartering: closing and reopening as a public charter school.
Turnarounds: replacing school staff, including the principal, relevant to the failure.
Contracting: contracting with an outside entity to operate the school.
State takeovers: turning the school operations over to the state educational agency.
Other: engaging in another form of major restructuring that makes fundamental reforms.
Needless to say, Superintendent McGinley would shudder at the thought that NCHS might become a charter school or (heaven forbid!) be turned over to the state. However, she could not choose business as usual.

So McGinley has chosen the avenue that allows her the most control over what happens to NCHS. Let's all hope that "High Schools That Work" works better than the half-hearted efforts at Brentwood's and Rivers's restructurings that failed.


Anonymous said...

I was privileged to work closely with David Colwell at North Charleston High School for many years. He loved his teachers and his students. He was loyal. He had to fight for what his school deserved every minute he served as principal (a position denied to him many times until it got so bad that the district was forced to turn to him for help when the school was imploding). He never backed down. I remember when he announced to us that he was leaving. He was very emotional. He stated the following reasons: (1)McGinley lied to him about promising to change the bell schedule to a later start time the next school year; (2) The "unethical" (Mr. Colwell's word)offering of a 25K bump in his salary (he realized it would be taken off the top of School Improvement money) He refused to accept the money; (3)Forcing the High Schools That Work reform model on his school and his teachers despite the substantial gains we had made under his leadership without it. He believed that HSTW was nothing more than a bureaucratic, expensive, wasteful, and cumbersome paperwork burden on his teachers. He tried to tell the district that he would not do it. McGinley insisted. So he left. The irony is that the district NEVER believed in him until they got desperate and told him to do it his way. When his way worked, McGinley meddled. She is a control freak. And how many principals and interims have we had since then? I've lost count!This is her mistake. Period. As for Mr. Colwell, I would work for him again in a minute. So would many other teachers. Thank you for allowing me to express my opinion.

Anonymous said...

Wow I feel like we have been here before 3 or 4 years ago with Burke...
Oh wait we were. We all know the outcome of this it was played out before. It will never end!

Anonymous said...

Too bad David Colwell left for a better offer in North Carolina. It would be nice to think we could keep good educators and public school leaders like this instead of running them off. We need to attract and keep the best, especially when they are home grown. CCSD has practiced just the opposite for years. CCSD reaps what it sows. If we are really lucky, the best will return and better for the experience. But not if CCSD and McGinley have any say about it. We need to quit exporting our talent. Importing suck ups doesn't help either.