The last time an invading force moved through Georgia, the locals didn’t fare very well. General William Sherman left Atlanta on Nov. 15, 1864 and arrived in Savannah four days before Christmas. His troops spared little that was in their way.
As reported by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, another host of invaders are now designing Georgia battle plans. Their target, public schools throughout the state, and especially in the Atlanta area.
Driving the process is Governor Nathan Deal’s desire to create a statewide Opportunity School District. Voters will decide on the fate of this in November 2016. If approved, low-performing schools across the state will be placed under the control of this new district with its own superintendent. In other words, some local schools will not answer to local school boards. This idea has been tried in both Louisiana and Tennessee with far less than glowing results.
In hopes of getting a jump on what the state may do, the Atlanta school system has rounded up $500,000 from various local and national foundations to hire national “ed reform” consultants to tell them how to come up with a quick fix for schools.
My reaction is about like this parent’s. “These are the same things that are being said year after year after year after year,” Tammy Dixon said at a recent advisory committee meeting. “We don’t need another survey. We need some action.”
Obviously Alabama is not the only state where policymakers think people many miles away know more than their own educators.