Houston Matters

The Lack Of Leadership Continuity In Public Education

We learn what impact continuity of leadership – or a lack of it – have on public education. Will it help or hinder efforts to transform a district – or a state?

 

Superintendent Richard Carranza said that the decision to end DACA affects about 10 percent of the students in the state's largest school district.
Houston ISD Superintendent Richard Carranza said he’s “incredibly honored” to be chosen to replace Chancellor Carmen Farina.

When HISD Superintendent Richard Carranza announced early this month that he’s leaving Houston’s schools to head the schools in New York City, after just 18 months on the job here, it demonstrated a longstanding reality – leadership in education will come and go, often faster than the policies that leadership spearheads can take hold.

Prior to Carranza, Terry Grier led the district for just over six years. That’s considered a long tenure in education. Right now, there are dozens of superintendent vacancies across the country, including in Los Angeles, Seattle, and Las Vegas. And Research from Education Week last year found that, of the top education officials in each state and the District of Columbia, 36 out of 51 had been on the job for less than two years.

What impact does continuity of leadership – or a lack of it – have on public education? Does it help or hinder efforts to transform a district – or a state? We ask Children At Risk’s Dr. Robert Sanborn, and Bradley Carpenter from the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at the University of Houston’s College of Education.

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