|Deasy Rumored to Be in Line to Head Los Angeles Schools
By Ann K. Williams
January 11, 2011 -- Former Santa Monica school district chief John Deasy is likely to be named Superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) Tuesday, according to news sources.
If reports are correct, Deasy, who headed the Santa Monica-Malibu School District (SMMUSD) from 2001 to 2006, will be in charge of one of the nation's largest school districts, responsible for the education of more than one million students.
While Deasy has been lauded by United States Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and LAUSD officials, A. J. Duffy, president of United Teachers Los Angeles stands opposed to Deasy's push for teacher evaluations influenced by student test data, according to the Los Angeles Times.
And Judith Perez, president of Associated Administrators Los Angeles is worried about the way Deasy is being chosen.
"Our concern is that the school board did not go through a transparent process of doing a national search," Perez told the Contra Costa Times Friday.
"This was done behind closed doors."
Deasy joined the LAUSD last summer as deputy superintendent and, if appointed, will replace Ramon C. Cortinez.
Deasy came to Santa Monica in 2001, after leaving his post as superintendent of Coventry (Rhode Island) Public Schools before his contract there expired.
Coventry officials gave his tenure a mixed evaluation, one saying he left their district “in shambles.” (See "Picking Up the Pieces," April 11, 2004)
Once in Santa Monica, Deasy quickly got a reputation for bold and often controversial moves.
Soon after taking over in July 2001, he convened a team of civic leaders to craft a strategic plan to run the District based on a corporate model, pushed for policies to increase standards and split Santa Monica High School into six smaller campuses known as houses.
Deasy led SMMUSD for five years, leaving before his second contract expired
to lead the much larger Prince George's County (Maryland) public school
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