Instead of focusing on getting ready for a new school year, Miles and his staff put on a one-hour long musical production with Miles in the lead role. It was a self-aggrandizing move when he should have been razor-sharp focused on teachers, students and schools.
Miles has put together the worst organized professional development program in HISD memory. This will harm everyone in EVERY community. Meanwhile, around the country, other school districts are providing rich and meaningful professional development for teachers and staff in the weeks before school starts.
Miles is making a mockery of the real issues facing our children. He is burning through HISD’s reserve fund, a quarter billion dollar increase in deficit spending unanimously approved by the Board of Managers last Thursday along with approval to give Miles a $1M blank check for purchases without board oversight or public knowledge.
He dismantled the homeless department earlier this month and school-based staff say that they don’t know who at the district level will provide them with the support they need to help homeless students under McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act. Then last Friday, Miles terminated nearly two dozen Special Education and mental health contractors, including school psychologists. This is a callous disregard for the very real mental health needs of children, especially after COVID.
At the read-in last Thursday, hundreds of parents, teachers, children, clergy and students were outraged about libraries being turned into discipline centers. While Miles stated to the press on August 3rd that he was not removing books from any library shelves, photos of empty bookshelves at numerous NES schools prove that he is absolutely comfortable lying to the public.
Last week, the BOM voted to approve a waiver to hire uncertified teachers for any teaching position. Even college students without degrees can become teacher of record. Miles once again is lying when he states that he wants a high qualified teacher in every classroom. Teachers with no experience, no certification and now no degree, are eligible to be teacher of record for our children. That will not help children read better. Teaching is craft.
With chaos at every corner, with no checks and balances from a democratically elected board, he seems to think he can do whatever he wants.
People who suggest that we give Miles time to prove his mettle are holding onto a naive assumption. They think the dystopian nightmare he has foisted on under-resourced communities will never darken their doorstep.
They are wrong. Miles has shown his hand over and over this summer. He lies to the public and there is no democratically elected school board to hold him in check. He is turning schools in under-resourced communities in Northeast Houston and elsewhere into sterile, militaristic work camps. He is playing so fast and loose with the people’s money that insolvency is now a real fear.
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Community Voices for Public Education
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