And Henceforth Ye Shall Call Him – “Special Master”
Remember back when Connecticut politicians used to talk about the sanctity of “local control.”
It turns out this precious concept applies to everyone except our state’s poor and minority communities. In those places that state of Connecticut has the right to tell them what is best.
While the Bridgeport school take-over fiasco garnered attention in recent months there was a lot less coverage about the Connecticut State Board of Education’s vote to “take over” the Windham School System. Last spring the State Board directed Acting Commissioner George Coleman to find a “Special Master” to take over the day-to-day control of Windham’s schools
Steven Adamowski, the outgoing Superintendent of Schools in Hartford was the state’s pick and Adamowski is now being paid $225,000, plus benefits that include five weeks of paid vacation, three weeks of sick time and 100% paid health benefits for himself and his wife. The state will even pick up the $3,900 for his annual life and disability insurance.
In addition to the cool title and the big bucks Adamowski has been given “super powers” to manage the school system, oversee the school budget, develop and implement an improvement plan and “offer incentives for new, highly trained educators to work in Windham.”
And it’s not one of those fly in consulting contracts. The law keeps the “special master” in place until “one year after the district achieves adequate yearly process in reading and math under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.”
The Department of Education said they picked Adamowski due to his record in Hartford and his long standing commitment to “education reform.” According to the biography he provides to organizations where he is going to speak, as Hartford’s Superintendent he “engineered one of the most comprehensive urban school district overhauls in the country. He has introduced an all-choice system of high performing schools, reduced the number of middle schools and has created smaller career-oriented academies.” More