- Elliott Stonecipher
- Elliott Stonecipher
Wednesday, March 15, 2017 ….. 5:15 P.M. …..
It is merely the latest chapter in the sad saga of our Caddo Parish public school system fading away.
This afternoon, the Caddo Parish School Board’s bossman, Superintendent Lamar Goree, joined in a Shreveport news conference with Louisiana Department of Education (LDOE) bossman, Superintendent John White.
The anxiously awaited “plan” to “save” some dying Caddo schools has now been proclaimed.
Fourteen-of-seventeen irreparably failing Caddo schools are to be magically fixed by LDOE and CPSB working together.
No, I did NOT make that up.
Worse yet – and this is all we really need to know – here is what the plan says about how its success will be judged. As you read, remember this: LDOE does the grading of all Louisiana schools:
“After the agreement concludes in 2020, district and state officials will review the agreement and determine if the outcomes were sustainable and met.”
Weirdly, the political nature of this entire op, especially as to race, was underscored by bringing in Shreveport Mayor Ollie Tyler to bless the plan … a plan she admitted she had not seen.
Tyler was qualified to do the blessing, we may presume, due to her brief, years-ago stint as Caddo superintendent.
(Perhaps Dr. Goree and the CPSB can figure out how to bill Shreveporters correctly for the water we use, since Team Tyler cannot.)
But I digress …
We have been through all of this before, of course. Here is the subject article I could only find from a different Gannett paper than ours:
Before and most recently, negotiations of some kind secretly took place between White, top staff of the Community Foundation, and unidentified others.
(We thank local government-watcher Will Broyles for his detailing of that op.)
Perhaps that has happened again.
After those secret talks, CPSB likewise kept the schools. At least this time the news media knew White was in town, and is reporting on today’s bust.
There is not one single thing in this new “plan” which could not have been done in any of the previous ones. Nothing. Zero.
This time they will call it “Caddo Transformation Next Zone,” awful since the last time it was called “The Transformation Zone” … which failed.
Perhaps we will learn “Twilight Zone” was passed-over because it has been used.
Regardless, had that “plan” worked, we would not be doing this one.
Those anxiously awaiting word on the status of Fair Park and Booker T. Washington High Schools were stiffed … no word … nada. Nothing on Lakeshore Middle, either.
For those who still hoped for something different – even a full-blown RSD take-over – today’s was very bad and sad news.
Facing an existential threat, the CPSB could come up with nothing better than joining LDOE to spend another 3 years politicking and flailing around, burning through tens-of-millions more taxpayer dollars.
Hooey aside? ‘Twas no more than a sprinkling of public education, political and bureaucratic fairy dust.
‘Winners? Yes. If you are a non-educational entity getting Title I money, you are in great shape.
For those wanting more of the CPSB detail / spin, online features by The Times, KTBS-TV and KSLA-TV are available.
Oh, by the way, the CPSB has to vote on this March 21. ( … stifle yawn … )
‘Bottom line? I will write it again: this school system refuses to focus, laser-like, on its sole reason to exist … the very vest education of all of our children.
Preserving bloat? Yes.
Blowing through obscene amounts of money? Yes.
Lining some specific pockets? Yes.
Race-based politics? Yes.
I’m sure the CPSB, LDOE, our unelected / unaccountable “leadership” groups, teacher unions, etc., etc., etc., will feign happiness about this.
Super. They’re welcome to it.
© 2017 Elliott Stonecipher … ALL RIGHTS RESERVED