Gadfly Bites 5/14/18 - How many strong options are there, Supe?

  1. The tiny Sandusky school district in northern Ohio is home to a new(ish) charter school within its borders, and at least one person seems pretty steamed. Unfortunately, that person is the one writing about it in the Register. It is amusing to me how much good news is actually contained in this piece while nonetheless being shaded throughout. I should probably say “attempted shade” because most of what passes for bad news is either naïve or flat out wrong. That includes the nature and operation of charter schools, their funding, the “misleading” name of this particular school, the role of high quality teachers, and why such a non-district choice exists in the first place. You know—small stuff. (Sandusky Register, 5/13/18) A similar situation occurs in this piece from the nearby town of Norwalk, but in reverse. What is intended to be a story about how great it is that parents and students in the area have so much school choice is entirely suspect due to the numbers presented. The data related to folks opting in to Norwalk versus Norwalkers opting to go elsewhere seem to me to belie the positive sales job in the quotes. Did the reporter know this or is it an accident? Read it and decide for yourself. (Norwalk Reflector, 5/14/18)
  2. Meanwhile, in the “big city”, the promised auction of (most of) the assets leftover from the former ECOT charter school got underway on Friday. Appropriately, it is an online auction. Bidding will remain open until mid-June. Remember, it’s common knowledge that none of those computers actually have as many miles on them as they seem to, so there’s bound to be some great bargains in the lot. Buy early, buy often. (Dayton Daily News, 5/11/18)
  3. Someone should do a study to find out how often an “extensive” superintendent search turns up the candidate which has been right under the school board’s nose all along. (Willoughby News-Herald, 5/12/18)
  4. The students of Youngstown Early College High School posted some impressive stats this school year, as they have in years past, and district CEO Krish Mohip is justifiably proud. YEC is on the grow for next school year, which is awesome. (Youngstown Vindicator, 5/12/18) In Lorain Schools, the list of building deans is what’s on the grow. Names and positions for most of the district schools (each school will have two deans – one for academics and one for family engagement) were released last week. (Elyria Chronicle, 5/12/18)
  5. Finally today, if you can stand more stories about the awesomeness of the Hamad family, so can I! This one specifically notes the role that interdistrict open enrollment played in the success of two of the Hamad children. It does not note, however, that that option will likely not be available for the youngest brother next year...or indeed for other students who might want it. (Columbus Dispatch, 5/14/18)
Jeff Murray
Jeff Murray is the Ohio Operations Manager of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute,