Thursday, May 15, 2008

New TUSD Superintendent Welcomed

(Dr. Elizabeth Celenia-Fagan) Tucson, Arizona. On Wednesday, May 14, at the University of Arizona the education community of Tucson formally welcomed the new TUSD Superintendent, Dr. Elizabeth Celenia–Fagin. Pima County Supervisor Richard Elias and Tucson Council Member Karin Uhlich attended, as did Dr. Ron Marx, the UA’s Dean of the College of Education. The elected officials were not addressed and did not speak, which shocked me. (At cloth events, all elected officials are duly recognized and usually, but not always, given the chance to say a few words.) This was not a cloth event. Almost everyone in the room was actively involved in the nuts and bolts hard reality of education and the challenges involved. I had the experience of being in a room with the people that "get it."

The group consisted of individuals with very diverse racial backgrounds, remarkably so and I am not just talking about Hispanic. It looked like an international event with us Anglos in the minority. I put my blogger name under my real name, and one individual approached, "Great job with the blog. Keep it up."

I would place odds quite high that those in the room overwhelmingly endorsed Dr. Celenia-Fagan over a distinguished cloth leader that likes to attend board meetings and never stood at the front of a room of kids for more than an hour, let alone run a school. A school district? Clothmeisters graduate from a different program featuring another expertise:

1. How to sound informed and important while saying nothing
2. Public flattery and ego inflation
3. Cloth Dress Code
4. Taking credit for results produced by others
5. Taking credit for what would happen anyway
6. Avoiding accountability
7. Insuring mishaps (plant closures, losing museums, baseball teams, etc.) reflect on factors beyond one's control
8. Destroying the efforts of others that produce embarrassing comparisons

I must acknowledge the cloth have it down to an art. They make serious money for the above. The cloth actually do have a leadership program designed to polish the above skills. Once you have the distinctions, you can tell who has graduated from the program.

Yesterday was not cloth, and it felt nice to be in a room of individuals committed to effective action that makes a real difference for real people. I had the chance to meet our new superintendent and wish her the best of luck. While I'm not a K-12 person, it all starts in kindergarten or earlier, and K-12 is a critical partner of the higher education community. Students unprepared (not only academically but in many ways) cripple the system. Perhaps less dramatically discussed than health care, our education system is deteriorating. I don't know how to get rid of cloth or solve all of the issues listed at my prior rant, but people do exist that care and understand the need to deliver real results.

I was reminded of Ayn Rand's masterpiece, Atlas Shrugged, which probably offers the finest distinction ever of the beauty of seeing a competent individual with a solid commitment producing solid results. After so much self-serving greed and arrogance, how refreshing it would be to see the country and local community start to shift towards the adept service of everyone.


Anonymous Scarlett Letter said...

Nice analysis.

5/15/2008 7:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


This was not covered in press at all.

5/15/2008 10:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The TUSD Governing Board needs help or someone to investigate their actions (or lack of). To allow a school Governing Board to condone such behavior by an administrator is simply unacceptable:

6/18/2008 11:05 PM  
Blogger passwordguy said...

You guys are so full of ka-ka...if anybody is paying attention to these posts anymore...Liz came to CO. amid great fanfare...District survey just came out giving her a 14% approval rating..lowest ever!

She received $20K more than her predecessor, yet 168 teachers lost their jobs at the same time...ask Liz about her "Millie" email over the holidays...pretty wierd..or about her rumour control emails..

The TUSD did a great job in sending her here and moving on their problems....

Go Arizona....

1/17/2012 1:29 PM  

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