Wednesday, April 4, 2012

District Seeks to Fill Role at Westinghouse

And they're holding out for a hero...

Pittsburgh Public Schools is advertising for a "visionary leader" to become the new principal for the troubled Pittsburgh Westinghouse 6-12 in Homewood this fall.

On its website, the district is advertising for a candidate -- from inside or outside the district -- who "is a bold and dedicated educator who can help us to reshape our future."

"Clearly, we're going to be looking for someone who has a passion for working in an urban school district, working in an urban high school, a passion for meeting the needs of kids whose needs have not been adequately met in the past," Superintendent Linda Lane said. (P-G, Eleanor Schute; see also Trib, Tony LaRussa)

It looks a bit confusing whether the incumbent principal desired or expected to retain that position or not -- communications may have pulled the trigger early.

Since both Superintendent Lane and the policy-setting School Board had to issue apologies for the roles they played in the debacle of a year at Westinghouse, one wonders whether the school's principal is the most crucial place to desosit the visionary leadership, and whether he or she can deliver the resources, programing, and institutional design such a school might require to thrive.

As one blog commenter put it:

Does this really mean that a new principal will have the autonomy, free of central office control, to actually assume leadership for a "vision"?

If so, how will this be ensured; AND, will other struggling schools be afforded the same opportunity? (Anonymous 7:10 on PURE Reform)

At least it's a step in an unavoidable direction. One hopes there will be a lot more positive news about Westinghouse and the School District during the off-season. There are a lot of visionaries encircling the District already.

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