Movers and Shakers
- Robin Jarvis resigned as the superintendent of the state-run Recovery School District in New Orleans. The move doesn’t come as a shock because Jarvis has been hinting about stepping down since last February, when the district struggled to find room for children on a long waiting list. “I have learned much about what it truly means to serve children, and I pray the RSD will ultimately succeed in its mission to create a better educational system for the city,” Jarvis said in a statement. Paul Vallas, former superintendent of Philadelphia Public Schools, will take over. He will begin his tenure as of July 1, 2007.
- Is Jim Notter good enough for Broward County (FL) Public Schools? The school board is considering offering the interim superintendent the permanent position. By doing so, it avoids a competitive—and costly—job search. “There are no saviors in urban education,” Michael Casserly, executive director of the Council of the Great City Schools, told the Miami Herald. “So if they’ve got a good solid performer that everybody is in accord with, I say jump at the chance.” Some community members, however, don’t want to act too soon. Although they have no beef with Notter, they expect the search they were promised when Frank Till was fired in November.
- Turns out there was no job search or hesitation about offering Nancy McGinley the job as chief for Charleston County (SC) Schools. Immediately following Maria Goodloe-Johnson’s announcement that she would be leaving the district to become the superintendent for Seattle Public Schools, the Charleston School Board turned to McGinley, the district’s chief academic officer. The board voted six-to-three to hire McGinley without even interviewing her. The three votes against McGinley represent a call for a more extensive process to fill the executive position.
- Alvin Frailey is the lone finalist to replace Leonard Merrell as the superintendent of Katy (TX) Independent School District. He will become the first black person to lead the 52,000-student district at a time when Katy ISD’s ethnic diversity is shifting and its 45 campuses are growing. Frailey has served as superintendent of schools in the DeSoto ISD, near Dallas, since February 2005. Prior to that he was superintendent of Cincinnati Public Schools from 2002 to 2005.
- The investigations of superintendent Annette Millard began once she was accused of feeding the 68 students in her small Oklahoma K–8 district only half a hamburger and three tater tots for lunch. An audit revealed that Millard reported nearly $10,000 in non-food items as food purchases. The audit also discovered altered and inaccurate documents meant to increase Millard’s salary, get federal funding, and receive reimbursements for expenses. Millard has resigned. Charges are pending.
- Who doesn’t like a two-for-one deal? In Michigan, two districts are looking to share one superintendent and split the cost. North Huron’s superintendent is retiring at the end of 2007–08, and the 500-student district wants to hire a replacement who will also head Port Community schools, a district with fewer than 100 students. Both districts continue to face declining enrollments. Committees representing both school boards are meeting to discuss the possibility.