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By Louis King, “Someone who knows what he’s talking about.” Photos by IBNN NEWS.
Shall we take a closer look at the players?
Superintendent Johnson, who will be nominated as the leader who must immediately fire her Communications and PR people for the poor method that this message was handled. On the other hand, as a leading lady, she showed calmness under pressure and demonstrated the ability to stand boldly in the face of fire. Clearly, she can’t get caught flat-footed like this again. She is also nominated as the queen of the back attack, brilliantly recommending to bring in award winning charter schools outside of the power of the omnipotent evil teacher’s union empire. She makes no friends in this one, but gets points for having a granite chin and a sense of justice.
The Minneapolis School Board gets the “Did you see who was driving that bus?” award. Clearly, they did not get the memo from the communications department that gave guidance on supporting the party line. Whew! They rolled right over the superintendent. Suddenly, they think that there is a need for a comprehensive high school plan. They sounded like mayhem riding through the parking lot going “OMG we have no idea what’s going on,” talking about cowards.
Stage hands that need to get pink slips: The district staff that totally slept on putting together a plan that included the community in arriving at this decision. They have been drinking the kool aid of mediocrity for too long and now the chickens have come home to roost. They also underestimated the reaction of the community or felt that it would not matter. Wrong again.
The winners and losers: The kids and families. For too many years poor performing elementary and poor performing junior high schools fed kids to north high. hence, the rise of charter schools, open enrollment and the west metro enrollment program. The market spoke and Black folks voted with their feet. Bravo! Next, renters became victims of the foreclosures-even though they were paying their rent. So much for life is fair, but hard. The result? Deserted neighborhoods with house after boarded up house–and the people walking pit bulls. Then, we have the closing of the feeder schools and the potion is finished.
The school is finished. Fire out! Firemen go home.
Where to from here?
- To the superintendent: Never ever get caught like this again. Period!
- To the MPS board: Leave this to the next board.
- To the next board: Listen and make the decision and move on. (Unless you are going to suddenly to produce kids, rip off kids from other schools, dismantle the open enrollment program, re-open the feeder schools, close the charter schools.)
Not gonna happen.
Bury it and move on.
If real estate is location; location; location – and location for families is schools, schools, schools you now have the opportunity to put together a real north Minneapolis program rather than the farce that has been poorly suggested by others.
This movie was a tragedy, laced with humor and mystery.