Thursday, November 3, 2011

Westinghouse administration

On another post Anonymous wrote:

"new post please--- Wstinghouse change of admin? Any comments or info?

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/news/breaking/s_765368.html"

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

The year at Westinghouse began with three principals. One resigned in late September as a result of differences with the Ass't Superintendent. Yesterday, the two remaining principals were removed by Administration. It is in the works to replace these three by returning the just previous principal to that assignment. She will be transferred from her current assignment at an elementary school.

The current Assistant Superintendent for Secondary School Reform was just previously the Director for the ALAs which are being disassembled piece by piece, year by year. The ALAs have been and remain among the ten lowest achieving elementary schools in Pittsburgh.

These are facts, not opinions.

There are more problems at Westinghouse as a result of decisions at Central Office than can be listed here.

Equity and excellence is missing in action. How can we support the students at Westinghouse who deserve equity and excellence?

Questioner said...

The article says Shawn McNeil has been principal for about a year, but the 2009 A Plus report to the community which came out 2 years ago lists him as principal at that time.

Disgusted said...

Mr. Heath Bailey (Principal on Special Assignment) << was he the September casualty?

I didn't think this school was going to work well, due to the lack of planning, the ignorance of the community and the students, and the arrogance of the administration at Bellefield. But, honestly, I had no idea they could screw it up so badly. If they'd planned it to fail they couldn't really have done a more spectacular job so far.

How about it P-G? Are you going to do some actual reporting?

Disgusted said...

Oh lordy, posting without rereading aloud!

the ignorance stated above is the ignorance of THE ADMINISTRATION placed at the school by Bellefield and of the administration at Bellefield.

Realized it could be read two ways so I wanted to be clear!

xxy said...

If they are indeed going to put the previous principal, Shemeca Crenshaw, back I think it is a good idea. She knew how to run the school.

Anonymous said...

The Principal mentioned by 8:18 was not a casualty as typically defined. He had the courage to stand up against ignorance (multiply defined) and had the good sense to resign rather than be a disrespected puppet.

This principal has a new principalship already in another school district who is fortunate to have hired him, in fact, snapped him up.

There is no future for the people in schools where they are being manipulated like marionettes. Those with courage, dignity and skills will quickly exit a district that is quite literally being destroyed. The real victims are the students.

Questioner said...

This was the principals' welcome message; it is sad that things didn't work out as hoped:

Principals' Message
Welcome!
It is with great pleasure that we welcome our incoming students to The Academy at Westinghouse. Opening in the fall of 2011, The Academy provides families an opportunity to participate in a rigorous, tuition-free, college preparatory school. Built on the latest research on how adolescents learn with a 21st century approach to curriculum, teaching practices and social issues, The Academy celebrates our students while challenging them to prepare for the leadership roles of tomorrow.

Built on the idea that today’s students will play a crucial role in the transformation of our communities, both local and national, The Academy at Westinghouse holds at its center the belief that our students will be the catalysts for real change. Thus infused into our curriculum is both the study and practical application of leadership and social justice. In addition, The Academy organizes its upper level program of studies into several key areas. Identified both as areas of interest for students, as well as significant areas of importance for community organizing and social change, our goals are to provide focus for students’ learning while creating high value coursework. Upon graduation students will have gained valuable insight into a specific focus area while preparing for acceptance into competitive colleges and universities.

Research shows that adolescents naturally make connections between different subject matter, cultures and time periods. At The Academy, we build upon that strength by engaging students in cross-curricular projects and interdisciplinary courses. The Academy will also have a strong focus on the five literacies (verbal, written, comprehension, auditory, cultural literacy and competency); our scholars will be asked to read, write, speak and listen in all of our courses. In addition, they will be pushed to develop their analytical skills in both the study of high level mathematics and science course work.

Finally, as The Academy at Westinghouse was built upon the hopes and dreams of both our families and our communities, their continued and active participation is crucial to our success. The Academy resides at the heart of the Homewood Children’s Village, and it is our privilege to join them in their mission to “simultaneously improve the lives of Homewood’s children and to reweave the fabric of the community in which they live.” All students who attend The Academy will be members of the “Village” and able to access the Wellness Center as well as many other support services.

We are excited to get to know each and every one of our students and their families and hope that this school year will be transformative!

Sincerely,

Ms. Kellie Abbott and Mr. Shawn McNeil
Principals, The Academy at Westinghous

Seen it All said...

From the Principals' Welcome Message:

"Built on the latest research on how adolescents learn with a 21st century approach to curriculum..."

That's the problem right there. In education, "the latest research" can almost always be translated into "the latest fad."

I noticed another common phrase in the Message: "research shows..."

That phrase can be translated into "according to some article I read..."

Sorry to be so cynical here, but if you read five different educational articles, you'll get five different "breakthrough" methods, each guaranteed to "revolutionize" urban education.

And here's the best part. Each method will contradict the other four methods!

So what should the PPS do? In my opinion, the PPS should throw out the phoney "research" and the self-promoting consultants.

Listen, really listen, to those with the on-the-ground experience. That would be the PPS teachers and the PPS parents.

Anonymous said...

New post:
The Trib. has an article today about declining enrollment and the glut of administrators in PPS.
The two Westinghouse principals put on PAID leave are PELA grads.

Anonymous said...

"The two Westinghouse principals put on PAID leave are PELA grads. "


Actually, wandering through the PPS website, Abbot(t) seems to have been the lead principal in CHARGE of PELA, teaching them all how to be wonderful whenever they weren't out following approved principals around. How ironic, eh?

Questioner said...

It's kind of interesting to look back to where things were 3 years ago with Westinghouse- see the link to PURE Reform's report on the planning meeting in October 2008:

http://purereform.com/westinghouse.html

Anonymous said...

Rumor is that S. Crenshaw is refusing to leave her elementary school and return to Westinghouse. She is supposedly taking a leave of absence instead. If this is true, there will be more turmoil in the school admin.

Anonymous said...

Shemeca Crenshaw will never fit well into the role of a puppet. She will break the strings and write her own script. Bravo! It is time for Principals to demand the autonomy needed to run their own schools, use their own judgment, make decisions that are tailored to the needs and strengths of their own unique populations (students, parents, teachers, communities). To do otherwise, is a betrayal of the position, the trust, the leadership, the goals, especially in schools where African American children have been put "at risk" by Central Office Administration.

Anonymous said...

Let's be clear: ALL of the children have been put at risk by our current central administration. And unfortunately when principals stand up and do the right thing, they are swiftly replaced by PELAs. I see no future for our district until someone clears out Bellefield.

Anonymous said...

I have heard some "trial balloon" theories regarding this story. The loudest one is a (an alleged) connection between the break in at Westinghouse and the ones on leave.

http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2011/
11/01/police-investigate-westinghouse-
high-school-break-in/

Which leads me back to an unanswered question... Where in the world is The police chief for PPS?

Anonymous said...

The Chief of Police, Fadzen, is still on leave, paid or unpaid, I don't know. Central office wants to fire the Chief and replace him with a City of Pittsburgh police officer. Administration and the Board are keeping quiet about their intentions; especially Board President Sherry Hazuda who could very easily dismiss the charges and bring back the Chief. Sherry is so intertwined in the web of corruption that is destroying this school district. I don't believe she clearly understands her role as board president. She tells Dr. Lane what to do, not the other way around. Sherry may be clever in the ways of politics but she is a self-serving puppet for the powers to be, and that makes her dangerous.

Questioner said...

So would PPS need to pay a city police officer?

Anonymous said...

Most likely yes. The City has been trying for years to get a bigger cut of the taxes.