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Mayor’s letter to City Council on school governance
February 14, 2000




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February 14, 2000

Linda Cropp
Council of the District of Columbia
One Judiciary Square
Washington, DC 2000 l

Dear Chairman Cropp:

I write this letter to pledge my support for a consensus school governance proposal crafted by you and Councilman Kevin Chavous. This proposal — a nine member hybrid board generally along the lines of a proposal first presented by Councilman Sharon Ambrose — best addresses the deficiencies of the status quo, best resolves our differences, and best commits our combined energy to encouraging, promoting, and accelerating the reform movement underway in our schools. We all want the same things when it comes to our school board: clear roles and responsibilities, focused accountability, greater professionalism, involvement from this office, and a voice for parents in the process. All of these criteria can be realized by this proposal both in form and especially in practice.

While I am proud of my original proposal, and am grateful to Council members Patterson and Evans for their partnership, after intense consideration I believe that the enormous resources applied to a multiple-choice referendum, with time and energy channeled in different directions, with charges and counter-charges against one another, could be better directed. We should apply our collective resources to a program to recruit the most able persons from every quarter for the school board and to achieve concrete, tangible results for our children. I will shortly share with the members of the Education Committee my agenda for education.


Anthony A. Williams

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