Professional Educators

House To Scrutinize School Turnaround Specialists

By Kevin Hart

Last week, Talk Priority Schools reported on a New York Times story that exposed the shaky qualifications of some firms marketing themselves as school “turnaround specialists.” Some of these companies have practically sprung up overnight, as they try to get a share of billions in federal School Improvement Grants being awarded to some of America’s lowest-performing schools.

Now, Rep. George Miller (D-CA), chair of the House Education and Labor Committee, has announced that he intends to hold hearings to review companies that contract with school districts to help improve schools. In a statement, Miller said that “it seems some companies with little or no expertise in education are purporting to be experts in school turnaround to try and take advantage of available federal money.”

“Companies who are hired to help turn around schools as partners should have the best expertise and the best qualifications,” Miller said, adding that he would use the House Education and Labor Committee’s oversight authority to ensure schools are hiring qualified vendors.

With Congress currently in recess, it is unclear when the hearings would take place. Visit Talk Priority Schools often for updates.

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