Failing schools are about failing administrations

March 10, 2010
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News from the state last week that the Harrington and Connery elementary schools are failing came as no surprise to those of us with younger children who never have placed our children in such facilities.

First and foremost, the facilities themselves doom children who enter them as they give the look and the feel of outdated prisons rather than conveying the warmth and efficiency that so many newer schools have to offer.

Having had some dealing first hand at the Harrington School last year, we were left with the impression that it was not a friendly place or a caring place and that that attitude began at the top.

Teachers are like infantrymen. The infantry doesn’t go into battle without a general writing up of the order and studying the plan for engagement and determining a strategy that assures victory.

In the case of the Harrington School and the Connery School, the generals have failed and should be replaced as we suggested last week before the State Department of Education reported that both schools are failing.

It is the strategy that is failing, that, and the overview from the highest place in the school department.

We have a school superintendent finding the time to advocate against the excellence shown by charter schools while failing to redirect two obviously failing schools.

In a huge bureaucratic system like the Lynn School System, everything begins at the top and flows downward.

The remaking of the Harrington and Connery Schools is a superhuman task and everything about the programs ongoing at those schools must be scrutinized and entirely changed or nothing is going to succeed.

Success begets success.

Failure begets failure.

The failures at the Harrington and Connery Schools are a long time in the making.

They were a long time coming.

These are railroad wrecks that could have been avoided.

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