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WRAL.com reported last evening that the controversy swirling around the dismissal of former Wake schools superintendent Anthony Tata might somehow have an impact on school funding.

The story quoted conservative Wake County Commissioner Paul Coble as indicating that the move could interfere with the commissioners approving a needed bond referendum for next year. Coble called the dismissal “a slap in the face.”

Let’s hope Coble isn’t truly serious. While high emotions during such a tumultuous week are perhaps understandable, the notion that conservative county commissioners would punish students and teachers for years to come over a personnel disagreement is, by any fair assessment, outrageous.

As the story also noted, the Wake schools continue to grow at a rapid pace with thousands of children joining the system every year. Let’s hope that adults of all political persuasions put the events of the last few days aside when making decisions about how to handle such a critical challenge. And let’s also hope that Tata, who has supported a new bond, does the honorable thing and counsels Coble and his conservative friends to calm down.

 

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It’s hard to know what’s more offensive: The fact that the old Wake School Board agreed to pay former Superintendent Anthony Tata $250,000 per year in the first place or the fact that the man accepted that much money and is now apparently accepting a severance payment of the same amount.

One of the biggest scams in modern America is, what Nobel Prize-winning economist Dr. Paul Krugman accurately describes as, “the rise of the imperial CEO.” Over the last few decades, Americans have been snookered into believing that supposedly brilliant chief executives are somehow worth the princely sums they demand and receive.

This  is, in a word, baloney. Read More

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The North Carolina Center for Education Reform, the nonprofit that pays (or paid) Wake County school board member John “Tea Party” Tedesco a healthy salary so he can afford to serve in and run for public office, just passed its one-year anniversary last week. As you might recall, Tedesco’s “group”  describes its mission as follows:

“The North Carolina Center for Education Reform is the catalyst for a powerful transformation of K-12 public education. The North Carolina education system will be empowered by utilizing effective and innovative practices that can be replicated for maximum impact. Optimizing the learning experience, establishing high expectations, reducing bureaucracy, and producing measurable results for every child is essential to their future and ours.”

Pretty impressive, huh? Except, of course, that it’s not actually true. Read More

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Not that it comes as much of a surprise, but another national study has confirmed what advocates for maintaining school intregration in Wake County have been saying for years: good schools drive up home values.

According to the Brookings Institution as reported by CNN: “Home values are $205,000 higher, on average, in neighborhoods with high-scoring public schools versus schools with low scores.” 

In other words, Wake County’s longstanding reputation as being a place in which “there are no bad schools” is an enormous boon to real estate values and overall economic wellbeing throughout the county. To the extent the powers that be (like Superintendent Tata and the Raleigh Chamber of Commerce) continue allow the gradual re-segregation of schools by income, they are sure to bring about a widespread decline in home values in many areas and a rapidly expanding gap between various sections of the county.

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Under the Dome reports this morning that Tea Partying Wake County School Board member John Tedesco is finding it tough to run for state office and fulfill his obligations to the citizens of Wake County.

This morning he apparently skipped a Board function to go to Winston-Salem to speak at a Tea Party co-sponsored forum for GOP state Superintendent candidates.

As we’ve also noted here recently, it doesn’t appear that his paying job is getting a whole lot of attention either.