Monday, December 15, 2008

Arne Duncan named Secretary of Education

Chicago Public Schools CEO Arne Duncan apparently will be named Secretary of Education by President-Elect Obama.

I couldn't be happier. I've had my eye on this guy for years, particularly because the Chicago Public Schools has really done some innovative things, particularly his use of The International Baccalaureate as a way to increase student achievement in urban schools. He's done great things in Chicago. If I were ever to leave Baltimore City Public Schools, it's Chicago Public Schools where I would probably look first, for the things I've heard this guy implementing in that system. From the outside, it's not Michelle Rhee-style union-busting and scare tactics, but a real commitment to teacher and learning quality.

This is, of course, just my perception from 700 miles away, so I reserve the right to be wrong. But, seriously, the guy has impressed me for years. He seems to be a real reformer, and parent groups and unions have both given him praise. He could be too much of a testing guy, but I don't think NCLB will be as bad as it is now under him. We'll see, I guess.

Read Joanne Jacobs' Blog on the selection.

Here he is, testifying before Congress:

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