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August 10, 2005
The Portable MBA for New York City educators
Booz Allen Hamilton's Strategy + Business magazine - must reading for anyone in the consulting industry - has an interesting feature on how management gurus like Jack Welch are working with principals of New York Citys public school system to create a future generation of leaders in the city. Andrea Gabor, who is part of the business journalism program at Baruch College at CUNY, shows how a little 'straight from the gut' thinking from Jack Welch can transform your average NYC principal into a lean, mean business machine. It's all made possible through the New York City Leadership Academy, a "selective leadership training program for high-potential principals."
It's a provocative thesis -- that NYC public schools can be reformed internally with talent already on hand. All it takes is a little know-how from some of the sharpest management minds around:
"At a time of roiling debate about educations role in the competitiveness of the United States economy and about the efficacy of such reform strategies as school vouchers, education tax credits, and the privatization of public school systems the leaders of one of the nations largest and most troubled school systems have declared that schools can be reformed from within, with the help of business. New York is declaring that principals, though rarely thought of as managers at all, at least not in a conventional sense, have the same need for managerial and leadership development skills as rising corporate executives."
This is MBA-type stuff adapted for New York City public schools -- "process mapping," "best practices," the notion of "leader as teacher," "peer-to-peer" learning, reality-based problem scenarios and distributive leadership.
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