Good news, bad news

What a day!

The good news: California schools showed gains on the 2008 state testing, adding to a consistent record of improvement on the books since 1999. San Francisco did well too, improving as a district to an API score of 772 from 764 ayear earlier.

The bad news: Deputy Superintendent for Instruction, Innovation and Social Justice Tony Smith was hired by Oakland Unified School District to be Superintendent of the Oakland public schools.  Of course this is a loss, since Dr. Smith was part of the heart and soul of the change happening in San Francisco. But we wish him well and the work here will continue even as he moves on to other challenges.

The good news: President Obama’s handpicked Secretary of Education Arne Duncan was in San Francisco today meeting with students, teachers and district leaders to see first hand the change that is happening here in San Francisco, and gave what was described as an “inspiring” address to 700 community leaders at a lunch this afternoon.

The bad news: Earlier in the day, Secretary Duncan told mayors and urban Superintendents that California had “lost its way” on education reform. Hopefully that rather depressing statement means that we are on the short list to qualify for “Race to the Top” funds that the U.S. Department of Education will be awarding later this year.

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One response to “Good news, bad news

  1. “Secretary Duncan told mayors and urban Superintendents that California had “lost its way” on education reform. Hopefully that rather depressing statement means that we are on the short list to qualify for “Race to the Top” funds that the U.S. Department of Education will be awarding later this year.”

    Sadly, I interpret it to mean just the opposite, that California has NOT been innovative, NOT showed any creativity or success in closing the achievement gap, so they will not get a penny of the “Race to the Top” funds.

    From the Chronicle: “Duncan said the few states that win the competition for the new education money will have to show they are innovative, and that their creative efforts succeed in helping low-performing students reach grade level and earn high school diplomas.”