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Mississippi editorial roundup

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 14, 2015 at 12:25 pm •  Published: January 14, 2015

A commentary in Forbes magazine in 2013 flagged several characteristics of strong educational leaders:

. They have consistent, high expectations and are very ambitious for the success of their pupils.

. They constantly demonstrate that disadvantage need not be a barrier to achievement.

. They focus relentlessly on improving teaching and learning with very effective professional development of all staff.

. They are expert at assessment and the tracking of pupil progress with appropriate support and intervention based upon a detailed knowledge of individual pupils.

. They are highly inclusive, having complete regard for the progress and personal development of every pupil.

.They develop individual students through promoting rich opportunities for learning both within and out of the classroom.

. They cultivate a range of partnerships particularly with parents, business and the community to support pupil learning and progress.

. They are robust and rigorous in terms of self-evaluation and data analysis with clear strategies for improvement.

Bounds has that kind of professional reputation, and those earmarks interestingly are definitions developed for British school leaders.

Some characteristics are universal.

Effective presidents also need to have a high level of emotional intelligence and interpersonal skills. Often, the power of school leaders is vested in their capacity to persuade and influence, rather than to direct.

Bounds is a strong collaborator, and often that is winning half the battle in higher education.



Jan. 8

Sun Herald, Biloxi, Mississippi, on pandering politicians:

As members of the Mississippi Legislature settle in for an election-year session, we urge them to act responsibly when dealing with public education.

Our schools should not become casualties on the political battleground. Nor should Common Core.

As we and others have pointed out repeatedly, Common Core is simply a set of higher academic standards to help make Mississippi students more competitive.

It is decidedly not a curriculum, much less one being forced on the state by federal officials or bureaucrats.

Yet Common Core has become a matter of outrageous self-righteousness for some Magnolia State politicians who've never put together a lesson plan but who think they know more about education than the school superintendents and boards of education and teachers who actually operate our public schools.

If there are specific objections to Common Core standards, let them be raised in the education committees in the state House and Senate and dealt with as what they are — an academic issue, not a political one.

If there are specific concerns about a particular school district's curriculum, then those concerns should be raised with that district's superintendent and board, not with the Legislature. That is the essence of local control of our public schools. Neither Washington nor Jackson dictates the curriculum used in Mississippi classrooms from Byhalia to Biloxi or between Natchez and Tupelo.

The difference between standards and curriculum is so wide you could park a school bus in the gap.

To those legislators who appreciate that, we offer our encouragement and support to stand up to those who either don't know the distinction or who don't care as long as their opposition to Common Core attracts votes.