Monday, March 24, 2008

Just Putting It Out There

Since I think this is just the first of many stories between now and July. I won't write a long post about the Mayor's latest announcement. Since he has all the cards stacked in his favor. I don't blame him for weighing out his career options. Because ultimately that's what it is. This is simply a career decision. In a city where some people think $100,000 is too much for a black man to make. Those citizens are virtually losing their minds. Especially now that Herenton is in the running for twice the money he was already making. I have never heard people in Memphis question how much Kevin Kane is making. Though I don't agree with him going back to the school system. I don't blame him for doing what he's doing. I think the mayor is,"just putting it out there."


Blogger Common said...

Herenton's hat out of the ring
The mayor's decision not to apply for the top job should raise the prospects for a successful search.
Saturday, April 19, 2008

The unsettling notion of Mayor Willie Herenton's return to the helm at Memphis City Schools surely was put to rest this week when Herenton made it clear that he has no interest in applying.

Provided the Memphis Board of Education does the right thing, this curious chapter in Herenton's biography may have finally been finished.

We know. The mayor has been known to change his mind, which is like saying that spring has been known to bring rain. But hours have passed since the mayor made that promise, and we're starting to believe.

The school board would be doing patrons of the district a great service by agreeing not to draft anyone for the job of superintendent of schools, which has been vacant since last fall.

That should also provide some measure of assurance for potential applicants who might have been scared off by Herenton's suggestion that there ought to be a draft-Herenton movement.

This is an important point in time for Memphis City Schools. It's always risky to identify a turning point before history has had a chance, but the choice of a superintendent is critical for a number of reasons.

This year the standard measurements of achievement for K-8 schools throughout the state are being raised in math and reading in an effort to close the gap between what is considered proficiency in Tennessee and nationally.

In other words, students will have to perform better on TCAP tests to keep their schools from landing on state lists of schools facing sanctions under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

Confidence in the district also has been shaken by management miscues at the nutrition center and elsewhere that have cut deep troughs of waste into the operating budget.

Shootings and gang rumbles at some city schools also pose a threat not only to students, but also to the district's ability to attract and retain students from high-functioning families that offer a stabilizing influence on the district.

A new superintendent who has had success as an administrator, who inspires confidence in the public and has the ability to motivate the staff could help the district to progress academically and get the management situation under control.

Herenton, whose reputation as a leader has been hampered substantially by management missteps and indecision, would be the wrong choice for such a challenging post, either as a draftee or an applicant.

School board member Kenneth T. Whalum Jr. said he doesn't "read too much" into Herenton's letter last week that stated he "cannot consider becoming an applicant for the schools' superintendent position at this time."

The caution is well taken, but chances that the superintendent search will succeed seem a little better today.

2:03 AM  

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