This breaking news from my colleagues Martha Woodall and Sue Snyder: http://tinyurl.com/3nr4h7p
Essentially, Mayor Nutter has asked his chief accountability officer to investigate the Philadelphia School Reform Commission's handling of the King High School charter situation, including the roles of SRC Chair Robert L. Archie Jr. and state Rep. Dwight Evans (D., Phila.)
King was named a Renaissance school in January. It was to become a charter in September, but now that process is on hold for a year because of two providers' withdrawals from the process and questions about a private meeting.
Nutter said he wants answers. "I am particularly concerned about the many unanswered questions surrounding the withdrawal of Mosaica Turnaround Partners from the charter selection process," the mayor said in a letter he sent today to Archie, whom he spoke to by phone Sunday. After the phone call, Nutter said he still has questions about what went down.
King's school advisory council, which consists mostly of parents, voted eight to one to have Mosaica run the school as a charter beginning in September. The SRC endorsed their choice, but after a closed-door meeting with Archie, a Mosaica representative, Deputy Superintendent Leroy Nunery and Evans - who has ties to Foundations, a nonprofit that was the committee's second choice - Mosaica mysteriously withdrew from the process. Foundations withdrew late last week, citing a "culture of unrelenting hostility."
There are questions about the role of Archie, who recused himself from voting on the match because his law firm represented Foundations. Nunery has said he didn't know what was going to be said at the meeting and was shocked by what happened. Superintendent Arlene Ackerman has said she didn't know what went on, either.
Should Archie have been holding meetings about this issue? What about the district administration, particularly Nunery and Ackerman? Do you think Mosaica was pressured into backing out of the deal to run King? How do you think this will affect King's staff and students going forward?