Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Chat with PPS boss -- retro technology and unsound logic

In the wake of yesterday's comments in my open letter -- here are a few points form the chat with the new Superintendent of Pgh Public Schools.
pittparent: I work in the technology industry here in Pittsburgh and have worked across the county in the field. I commend your use of data and the data-driven decisions. However, I do wonder how accurate the data is PPS. Without a CTO, how do plan to address data integrity and the technology infrastructure?

mark_roosevelt> I think that the data capacity here is amazing. With Rand's help it enabled us to use rich. deep student achievement data to drive our right-sizing decisions. No one has brought any inaccuracies to my attention as of this time.

The data is closed. The lack of inaccuracies is because the data has not been put into the open. The deep student achievement data needs to be put out into the open, as in an open-source software model.

This is not a good answer. Thw lack of a CTO is sticking out like a sore thumb. RAND is not well suited to be a CTO for the district.
sethmad: What are PPS's plans for closed school buildings? Will they be sold? Razed?

mark_roosevelt> We must be much more aggressive about dealing with the closed facilities. Sold to a tax-paying entity will be the priority....
Wait again. Think again. A sell off of the buildings to a tax-paying entity is hardly a sound-bite. A sell-off where the rich get richer and the poor get poorer is NOT an option that is going to work for me and our communities.

One of my six questions got put up to the chat board. By the way, the Post-Gazette chat is so retro. I saw better chat applications with 1985 vintage.
Mark_Rauterkus: I think it might make great sense to turn Peabody and Westinghouse High Schools into SINGLE GENDER Schools. Then we'd have public school alternatives to Central Catholic and Oakland Catholic.

mark_roosevelt> We will be looking at high school reform next. Consideration of single-gender schools at various grade levels is on our list of inquiries as well.

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