At a candidates seminar for the "BIZPAC" endorsement (rigged for a predetermined outcome) incumbent Mitch Sheppard gave her philosophy for school board governance as "taking a view from 30,000 feet". If you had flown in an airplane over lower Manhattan in the summer of 2008, Wall Street would have looked great from 30,000 ft. If you had been sitting in the boardrooms of Lehman's, AIG, Merrill, Wachovia or any other financial firm about to crater, everything would have looked good from the top floors of their headquarters. If you're sitting on the board in the Grile Center everything looks as good as what Wendy tells you.
That situation will continue if the candidates endorsed by such "experts" as BIZPAC and the JG make up next board. The "experts" are only slightly less informed about the situation in our classrooms than our board members. The problem is in our classrooms. The solutions have to come from people who have been in the classrooms. No one who has been in the schools would believe that last spring's increase in 3-8 ISTEP+ passing rates showed a real improvement. But that's what our board believes because they have no first hand knowledge of the reality in our buildings. Maybe that's what the public believes as well, even after they eventually see the miserable results from the high school ECA's. We'll see Tuesday.