Vitti versus Stewart with the commissioner of education job on the line.

I have been wrong about things before. I thought Ed
Pratt-Danals would be working for a KIPP school by now and I thought Obama was
going to be good for education and neither has come true. So I might be wrong
about Superintendent Vitti angling for a bigger job too, but follow me for a
moment. 
The state board of education only kicking and screaming
appointed Pam Stewart to be education commissioner. Yes I know they said
complementary things about her but she was passed over first by Gerard Robinson
from Virginia and then Bennett from Indiana before getting the job. To be
honest if they hadn’t hired her after two stints as intern commissioner that
would have been really telling.
So here she is finishing her first year and se has come up
with some humdingers. She attacked the parent of profoundly disabled little boy
for questioning the states overbearing testing policies. She made cosmetic
changes to common core and then changed the name hoping nobody would notice
that for all intensive purposes the same thing. Then she hired the same group
that did the disastrous VAM to replace the FCAT and is paying Utah 5.4 million
dollars to field test the questions after saying field testing was unnecessary.
Yeah I get it, perhaps we could chalk al of above to the nutty
nature of Florida but now lets add in Superintendnet Vitti’s push back against
Stewarts doubling down on Florida’s failed accountability system. 
He penned a letter to the board outlining why moving forward
without a pause was a mistake and Chartrand the chair of the state board of
education and Vitti’s rabbi, urged Stewart to take the recommendations under
consideration. She didn’t and a bill making its way through the Florida
legislature is basically a cut and paste of what Stewart has recommended.  I want to add despite the fact that the PTA,
the teachers union and the superintendents association have come out against
it; so much for school choice or local control right.
So what does Vitti do, he strenuously objects (anybody
remember that scene from a few good men) but this time he brings the DTU, the
NAACP and the school board with them and fires another shot across the bow of
Stewart (and the legislature).
“I am vehemently against
using this test next year the way right now that the legislature is saying we
need to use it,” said Duval Superintendent Nikolai Vitti. “Anyone
will tell you that before you use an assessment it needs to be properly field
tested.”
Vitti and other school officials
were critical of the field testing to take place in Utah.
“Utah looks nothing like
Florida,” he said.
 I get it my evidence is a little thin, a barely competent
education commissioner, disagreeing with a woefully incompetent board and a
superintendent supported by the latter pushing back against the former. But if
you buy Vitti’s claim that he wants to spend a career in Jacksonville I have
some swampland you might be interested in cheap. He is not the 35-year-old
superintendent of the 20th biggest school district in the nation
because he likes the Jaguars. No this is a stop on his way to bigger
things.  

Then again I have been wrong before. 

One Reply to “Vitti versus Stewart with the commissioner of education job on the line.”

  1. It would be fine with me if he moved on. He promised to improve the climate, but teachers are fearful, for good reason.

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