Madison schools superintendent gets mixed grades as contract renewal vote looms

Matthew DeFour:

After 2½ years as Madison schools superintendent, Dan Nerad is still finding his footing.
For Nerad and his supporters, that’s more of a statement about Madison’s slippery and sometimes treacherous political terrain.
But among critics there is frustration that Nerad hasn’t risen to the task, particularly given the high expectations for the former social worker and Green Bay superintendent.
The two views among Madison School Board members and others in the community are circulating as the board weighs whether to extend Nerad’s contract beyond June 2012.
Supporters point to a long list of accomplishments so far despite severe obstacles — implementation of 4-year-old kindergarten after decades of discussion, development of a strategic plan that brought in dozens of community voices and expansion of dual-language immersion programs.