DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Dozens of schools in the Dallas Independent School District could have new principals starting next school year. The plan is all part of Superintendent Mike Miles’ plan to revamp the district.
While the stated mission is to increase student performance, some are calling his idea of reform ‘reckless’.
Miles has said that major change in district schools is possible when leaders, who miss the marks set for student achievement, are also changed.
An estimated 50 Dallas ISD principals have been given the option to retire, resign, or face contract non-renewal and those options have Miles facing a fight.
“This process the superintendent has pulled out doesn’t appear to be fair,” suggests Joyce Foreman, with the Coalition to Maximize Education.
Foreman has joined with others to push back against Miles’ principal overhaul. Advocates for two south Dallas high schools in particular, Madison and Lincoln, claim the principal evaluation process tarnishes the very school leaders they wish to keep. “In many of the schools, there are principals the community likes, and the community believes in their heart of hearts, these principals have advanced the schools from where they were,” Foreman said.
Miles says everyone, district employees, students and parent, will have to make adjustments. “There’s going to be sensitivity around my principal, my school. That’s natural,” he said.
Wednesday Miles said that although no principal removal list had been formally released, he would dispute claims the evaluation of DISD principals is going against the wishes of school communities. “There’s no solid voice of this community. There are those saying, ‘It’s long overdue. You’re right. We do need great principals. Yes. This transformation is what we need.’”
South Dallas trustee Bernadette Nutall disagrees and believes the superintendent isn’t listening to the parents and voters who are calling her. “Reform does not have to be reckless. I think we should have started this at the beginning of the year,” she said.
Principals on the non-renewal list won’t be notified for another two weeks, and the board must approve the call to remove those individuals in May.
Miles faced a tough audience at Madison High two weeks ago when he discussed the topic. Expect to see that same toughness over the issue again.
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