Sunday, October 08, 2006

Devil or Angel?

School Me has a great article about an imposing principal who gets remarkable test scores. A lot of the teachers adore her. One comments that before she arrived, "parents controlled the school."

Well, they don't do that anymore:

Nivi Lifshitz tells the story of her unfortunate introduction to the Los Angeles Unified School District like this: She answered her cellphone on her daughter’s first day of school and was greeted by a scream — “This is the worst-behaved child I’ve ever encountered in my life!”

Only later did the caller identify herself as Woodland Hills Elementary School Principal Anna Feig, Lifshitz says. The kindergartner, Feig told her, had crawled under a table and refused to come out. It seems her teacher, new to the job, had called the principal for help and Feig hauled the child into the office. The little girl spent three of the next four days outside the principal’s office — once, Lifshitz swears, for refusing to use the correct crayon color.

Her daughter is now at another school.

My friend Schoolgal very much appreciates that she backs up teachers. My view is a little more jaundiced, having given up the remotest hope of administrative support many years ago. Also, I must confess to being one of those dreaded pushy parents myself.

Read the article and let us know what you think. Read the comments too.

Is she a helpful and productive principal whose methods ought to be emulated? Or is she a demon from hell who deserves to perpetually wander the New Jersey Turnpike?

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