Stay out of YOUR business!

Public education is public business, that is, your business. However, the administration thinks otherwise, and I was raked over the coals a few days back for saying, “The MMSD’s line certainly tells students, parents, teachers, and taxpayers that we don’t know bleep about education, so we should sit down, shut up, and get out of the way while the administration does what it pleases.”
I further commented, “The issue is MMSD’s ‘corporate culture,’ and how it values the opinions of administrators vs. the rest of us.”
In the draft of the minutes of Performance and Achievement Committee on November 14, 2005, we get a clear restatement of the MMSD’s organizational culture:

The reason that the board and public will not be able begin thinking through the curriculum redesign is that the superintendent invoked a new form of ‘executive privilege’ at last Monday’s meeting. When I asked for information as soon as the committee makes its recommendations, the superintendent successfully argued that no one outside of administration should have access to the recommendations until he decides which recommendations he supports. According to Rainwater, public discussion of the recommendations before he makes his choices would interfere with his discussion with the experts on his staff. Apparently protecting administrative discussion is more important than opening the curriculum-choosing process to public scrutiny and input.


I’ll now have to amend my earlier comment: “The MMSD’s line certainly tells the BOARD OF EDUCATION, students, parents, teachers, and taxpayers that we don’t know bleep about education, so we should sit down, shut up, and get out of the way while the administration does what it pleases.”
I respectfully encourage the board to assert its appropriate role as the ultimate authority over the MMSD.

  • Joan Knoebel

    You were right then and you’re right now, Ed. Rainwater is a dictator. Even if you like his policies, that’s not the way this district should operate.
    And in keeping with the typical way business gets done, look for the fiat about West’s English 10, due for release on the district website tomorrow at 10 a.m. Tomorrow, as in the day the district closes down for winter break, although it wasn’t like public input was ever going to change this top-down decision.
    Wake up, folks. It’s time for new blood on the school board. It’s time to elect board members who will actually insist on overseeing this administration.