Fetishizing School Chiefs Hurts Kids

Cathleen Black, with New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg (left) and outgoing Schools Chancellor Joel Klein.

Randy Shaw: Unfortunately, the media’s excessive and irrational devotion to school chiefs as saviors for the nation’s schools ignores the reality that no school chief, can overcome inadequate school funding by running schools like corporate turnaround specialists, and fetishizing their importance distracts from schools’ real needs. Education seems to be the only field where rising to the top requires no experience. Careers spent in the profit-driven corporate world are now identified as the best backgrounds for public school leadership.

Why CNN Fails

CNN

Randy Shaw: CNN’s chief problem is not a lack of partisanship. Instead, it is that CNN’s “news” primarily consists of opinions from partisan political hacks. Most work for CNN because no candidate wants to hire them, and it’s an easy gig because they don’t have to know much about the subjects they pontificate about. Does CNN really believe viewers are still interested in the opinions of the corporate-funded James Carville? Or that CNN will steal viewers from FOX News by hiring Erick Erickson of Redstate.com, who publicly threatened to shoot census workers? CNN is failing because it’s selling stale conventional wisdom, which viewers are rejecting.

One on One with LAPD Chief-Designate Charlie Beck

Incoming and outgoing LAPD Chiefs, Charlie Beck and Bill Bratton (Photo/Nick Ut)

Beck has some big shoes to fill, no doubt, but after meeting and speaking one-on-one with him, I think the LAPD is going to be okay. I wasn’t that sure beforehand, but I can tell you that Beck is, if nothing else, a sincere and humble guy with big ideas, who has a passion for a job in a city that at times is one heartbeat away from a full on race riot.