July 13, 2020

Dr. Josh Starr: Public education needs bold, focused leadership

Public education is under constant threat of being reformed by meddlesome elected officials in state and federal government, but locally it’s the district superintendent who is ultimately responsible for ensuring students are learning what they need to learn.

But who wants that job?

Equal parts politician, media personality, chief executive, and educational leader; a superintendency sounds like a risky position to take. The pay may be good, but who wants to spend days and nights engaging with old bureaucracies and political fiefdoms?

Dr. Josh Starr, president of PDK International and former superintendent of Montgomery County Public Schools joined the Education Is Power broadcast to discuss what it takes to be a bold leader for public schools. He says leaders need to be unmovable in their dedication to pursuing equity, they must be collaborative with teachers, and they need to seek support from the silent majority of reasonable people in their cities who support common sense reforms.

See our discussion here:

If you prefer to listen to the interview you can find it here:

*In this discussion we reference the PDK poll of public attitudes about education which you can find here; Don McAdams’ book “What School Boards Can Do” which you can find here; the emerging story out of Montgomery County Public Schools regarding integration which you can find here.

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