Monday, April 6, 2009

U.S. education secretary setting a bolder, broader agenda

U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan brought an uncomfortable message to the meeting of the National School Boards Association in San Diego over the weekend: he supports the idea of mayors seizing control of troubled urban school systems.

As San Diego Union-Tribune writer Maureen Magee reports here, he also wants to "recruit top teachers to underperforming campuses through incentives, reinvent schools as community centers, and increase collaboration among school districts, businesses, nonprofits and mayors."

There's a lot to digest in the new secretary's approach to public education. He's been at the forefront of some important reforms in Chicago, where he sometimes came into conflict with the Chicago Teachers Union.

LFT is impressed with his concept of schools as centers of their communities. That is the prescription the Federation had in mind in our call for a bolder, broader agenda for public education.

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