[ProgressiveEd] Meeting with Mr. Klein and Ms. Cahill

[email protected] [email protected]
Tue, 6 May 2003 15:17:53 EDT

Dear folks,
There's been a lot of discussion in advance of Friday's meeting with Joel 
Klein and Michele Cahill about what needs to be discussed at that meeting.  
Some points:  
•We need to get clarity on the following:  networks, instructional 
superintendents, the selection of instructional coaches for schools, and 
school choice.
    *Networks may already have been set up by the time we meet.  This is the    
regional superintendents' responsibility.  We need to create as much pressure 
as  we can to provide us with the kinds of networks we want (80% schools like 
ours).      Some of this pressure will involve contacting local politicians, 
who've been     promised an opportunity to approve the new networks, and 
having them intervene   on our behalf.  
    *Instructional superintendents have already been chosen.  We've got to 
look over   these lists and do what we can to get supportive matches.
    *We've got to demand that each of our schools be given the opportunity to 
select  its own instructional coach.  Anything else may just continue the 
conflict over   methods and approaches to learning, which have been 
time-consuming in the past.
    *Parents must continue to have the right to choose their schools.  
Schools must    continue the process of interviewing prospective parents.  We 
understand and  respect the right of parents to transfer out of failing 
schools, under No Child Left    Behind.  (It's important that the school 
system take real steps to deal with why a   school may be failing.)  We will 
accept transfers to our schools, but these  transfers have to respect 
long-standing admissions policies.  These policies  include having parents 
visit our schools prior to their child's being accepted.  This  isn't in 
order to exclude a child based on test scores; it's to make sure there's    
agreement about how we work with children.  It's also our way of creating the 
    most diverse student body possible.
•We need to work on plans for longitudinal studies (there are several plans 
in the works) that will help schools to work closely together and that will 
yield real information about students that can be used to build curriculum 
 •Parent representatives:  I think we need to weigh in on the side of 
parents' right to choose their own representatives.
I look forward to hearing from you.  Thanks.
Bruce Kanze