Monday, January 10, 2011

Dana Center and other Gossip

I finally got a small batch of fresh PPSD gossip yesterday, most of which I won't share with you because... it's just gossip. Also, stuff related to specific schools is theoretically traceable, and I don't want to get anyone in trouble. One thing I heard, however, is that there was a lot of turnover recently at the Dana Center, or at least the part of it which works with RI and Providence, and a lot of the people there working with PPSD left. Is this true? I don't know. But the University of Texas-based Dana Center is a big part of PPSD and the RI Race to the Top (at least the first version) strategies.

I have been observing this game long enough to not be surprised if this did happen -- education consultancies have their own politics as complex and contentious as any other organization or market. If teacher quality is important, so is consultant quality, and if that's going down, it's going to have an impact on school reform -- and there is virtually no mechanism for citizens to know what's going on at that level.

Also, as far as I know, there is no public online source for district and school level gossip, and in particular the PTU seems to have no interest right now in fostering direct communication between teachers in different schools. Seems a little weird in 2010.

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