The State Department of Education’s NetStat to the rescue!

When in doubt, purchase a new data management system, give it a name that has nothing to do with education, hire more consultants and then hold as many meetings and “training sessions” as possible.

All paid for, or course, by the generous taxpayers of Connecticut (while school districts across the state go without adequate funding).

Here in Connecticut, the corporate education reform industry has become a caricature of itself.

This very afternoon, Commissioner of Education Stefan Pryor and Morgan Barth, his uncertified “Division Director of the Turnaround Office,” will be hosting the first “NetStat” meeting of the year with representatives of Pryor’s 11 Commissioner’s Network Schools.

The State Department of Education’s delegation will include the cadre of out-of-state consultants that arrived with the $1 million contract with the politically connected Mass Insight Company.

At last word, even Governor Malloy is planning to make an appearance at today’s meeting.

At today’s NetStat meeting, Pryor and Barth’s goal is to spotlight “the schools with ‘best-in-class’ results” which is more than a bit odd considering that half the schools have only been members of the Commissioner’s Network for one year and the other half just became Commissioner’s Network schools this past month.

But as Morgan Barth, the former teacher who couldn’t bother to become certified wrote in a recent memo, “We’ll hear many stories at NetStat including one from a dynamic duo – Karen Lott and Marilyn Taylor – respectively the principals of Milner and Dunbar. In visiting both schools I was impressed with the positivity and structure of the school culture/climate.”

Impressed with the positivity and structure of the school culture/climate?

Apparently Barth remains a big fan of the no excuses, no talking, march in a single line, hands at your sides, detention for wearing the wrong colored belt or not keeping your eyes on the teacher school climate approach.

And what a surprise that the co-founder of Achievement First, Inc. (Stefan Pryor) and the former principal of an Achievement First, Inc. school (Morgan Barth) are bringing together schools from around the state so that they can “learn” about best practices from two privatized, “no excuses” schools that have been taken over by the FUSE/Jumoke Academy charter school chain.

It must be especially convenient since the COO of FUSE/Jumoke is a member of the State Board of Education, thanks to Governor Malloy, and she will probably be in attendance thanks to her role as that company’s leading voice in their expansion efforts.

Why not just be a bit more transparent and entitle the workshop; The Malloy Administration’s dedication to privatizing public education in Connecticut.

According to a copy of today’s agenda that was posted on the web, “Attendees will receive data packets for their schools, containing current and historic data for a universal set of leading and lagging indicators used to measure school turnaround.”

They’ll then spend that day analyzing the data using a “3-step data protocol” while “The Turnaround Office will present an 8-step change management process used to drive organizational effectiveness and improvement.”

The Bottom Line?

“School teams will learn more about the vision for and expansion of the Commissioner’s Network during the upcoming school year.”

Meanwhile, we are one hundred days into the school year and the same “Turnaround Office” has still failed to process all of the Year Two Alliance District Grants leaving at least a dozen school districts without the money they were promised by Governor Malloy and the General Assembly to help “turnaround” their schools this year.

And one of the towns left twisting in the wind?

Winchester, Connecticut.

The very community that reported this week that it might have to close its schools due to a lack of funds.

But no worries…

With the first NetStat meeting of the year being held, solving Connecticut’s school funding problem can’t be far behind.

  • brutus2011

    It is always about the administrator/managers above the classroom while those in the classroom do without unless of course the teacher brings supplies in from home. Reminds me of an old teacher joke–teaching is the only profession where one steals supplies from home to bring in to work!

    Anyway, this is the runaway managerial mentality at work–we need teachers to rise up and take back each individual building.

    Want proof?

    Imagine our schools without teachers and only administrators. Then imagine our schools without administrators and only teachers. Under which scenario would the schools still function?

  • Sleepless in Bridgeport

    One thing about it……going to hell is downhill all the way. Nero…..bring on your fiddlers and add Malloy, Pryor, Vallas, Barf, Adamowski to your band.

  • Mary Gallucci

    How depressing.
    Windham Middle School is NetStat’d.

  • Sue

    Meanwhile, 3 teachers and a principal were in training in Windham so they could convince the rest of us the importance of extended school day – or how teachers must take over the jobs of parents – like providing homework help, dinner, extra-curricular activities, etc. This has been mandated in many schools in CT.

    The problem is that our teachers are parents of young children have have to find and pay for someone to do the same for their children. No buy in? HIre TFA’s!

    • Linda174

      Then they need to hire a second shift. How much can teachers do with all the other responsibilities, the new evaluation system, the new standards, clubs, before school help, after school help, PPT’s, 504’s, case conferences, child study, duties, etc? Hire more people for after school services or Stefan, Dannel and Morgan can come in and mentor the children. It’s ridiculous. All they really care about is test scores anyway.