Brain dead

Isn't the show over when the fat lady sings? Not for these four chronically failing schools in Miami-Dade. The story goes something like this: four schools that have consistently earned "F's" on Florida's state report card were slated to close at the end of last year. The district had tried myriad fixes: investing millions in the four, installing new leadership teams, and hiring academic deans and subject-area coaches, all to no avail. The latest? The School Board will take over the schools, with Superintendent Alberto Carvalho leading the charge. This would enable Carvalho to change the schools' leadership (again) and hire (more) expert consultants. And this is different from past efforts how? But don't worry, says Carvalho, this great pledge of leadership is just for show; ''The plan [to take control of the schools] is simply the legal requirement should the schools not make the grade. It is not my intention to have to live up to it." Instead, he expects a "miraculous" turnaround by the end of the year. "To me," he explains, "the only logical course of action is to maintain these schools under my direction." Too bad logic is the only thing missing in this kitchen sink.

"4 failing schools in Miami-Dade will stay open," by Kathleen McGrory, Miami Herald, November 15, 2008

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