Superintendent turnover

Superintendents of large urban school districts don’t last very long – and for good reason (“New L.A. Unified chief previews 100-day plan,” Los Angeles Times, Feb. 11).  I fail to see why Alberto Carvalho, the incoming superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District, will fare any better.

During the 28 years that I taught in the mammoth district, I saw firsthand how the best laid plans of superintendents never became reality. Urban school districts serving diverse student populations are too large and sclerotic to change.  All the energy in the world is not enough to overcome the obstacles such students bring to class through no fault of their own.

New York City, home of the nation’s largest district, is a case in point.  Despite reorganizing its central headquarters, renaming its head chancellor and spending more per student than any other district, it continues to post dismal results.

(To post a comment, click on the title of this blog.)

2 Replies to “Superintendent turnover”

  1. Agree with you that LAUSD is unmanageable. The late Michelle King was their best hope for finding a middle ground between corporate reformers and UTLA. She never got around to doing anything, but she was a good listener. Can’t say I miss working for LAUSD.


  2. DC and Chicago also seem to be beyond the management capabilities of anyone. How many times has DC hired someone who is finally going to fix the problems and that person is gone within a year or two.

    Los Angeles would probably be better off breaking up the LAUSD into smaller school districts so that someone of them could improve


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