Raising school achievement isn’t enough – D.C. principals must also keep order

Jay Matthews

Dunbar High School Principal Stephen Jackson was fired at the end of the last school year by the private management group in charge of the school but put back in the job last week by interim D.C. Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson at the urging of parents, community leaders and teachers. Jackson seemed an unusually lively and energetic educator when I met him at the long-troubled Northwest Washington school a year ago. He may be the person who can finally straighten Dunbar out.
But the odds are against him because of the ingrown nature of the school’s problems and the dispiriting message Henderson’s decision sends to him and any other school leader she assigns to a low-performing school after this.