Persistence and Agility: The Rodel Foundation of Delaware’s Efforts to Transform Delaware’s Education System by SARAH ALVORD OCTOBER 2012
Equally importantly, the Rodel Foundation of Delaware’s Paul Herdman and Dori Jacobson contributed countless hours of their time helping us get information, insights and data. This case study would not have been possible without their leadership, assistance and candor.
Education Reform in Delaware, 1997–2010
Adapted from the Delaware Education Reform Timeline, accessed online at the Delaware Department of Education and materials from the Rodel Foundation of Delaware.
1997 Delaware State Testing Program legislation passes, including a provision creating the position of Secretary of Education, shifting authority from a state board to the governor.
1998 The Education Accountability Act passes, establishing the parameters for student, school, district, DOE and parent accountability.
2000 Valerie Woodruff is sworn in as the first secretary of education.
2005 The Rodel Foundation of Delaware (Rodel) releases Opportunity Knocks, a comprehensive analysis of the performance of the state’s public education system.
In partnership with the business community, Rodel convenes the Vision 2015 Steering
Committee, a coalition of education stakeholders, to make recommendations on the report.
2006 Steering Committee releases Vision 2015 plan with 45 recommendations in six key policy areas.
Rodel launches comprehensive, statewide communications strategy balancing its voice with that of its diverse coalition of stakeholder
2007 Legislative setback when omnibus legislation to fund Vision 2015 is defeated in committee.
Governor Minner establishes Leadership for Education Achievement in Delaware (LEAD) Committee by executive order to make implementation recommendations on Vision 2015.
Delaware General Assembly passes Senate Joint Resolution 7 supporting Vision 2015 and the LEAD committee and Delaware Early Childhood Council is written into law.
Rodel forms the Vision Network to implement recommendations of Vision 2015.
2008 The LEAD Committee releases (1) Cost Efficiency Study which identifies $86‐158 million of cost savings in the state’s $1.65 billion education budget, and (2) Report on Education Funding in Delaware, calling for changes in the way funds are distributed for public education.
2009 Dr. Lillian Lowery, superintendent of schools for Delaware’s largest district (Christina), appointed secretary of education.
Education Voters is launched to inform the public about pressing education issues.
President Obama signs the federal Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 into law, which includes the $4.35 billion Race to the Top competition.
Delaware joins the Common Core Standards Initiative.
Delaware General Assembly passes legislation enabling the Delaware DOE to implement a new assessment system—the Delaware Comprehensive Assessment System (DCAS)—based on the recommendations of Vision 2015 and those issued by a legislative task force in 2006.
2010 Delaware State Board of Education approves crucial regulations to ensure greater flexibility and accountability in public schools, addressing key elements of the Race to the Top
Delaware submits a $107 million application for federal Race to the Top funding. In April, the U.S. Department of Education announces that Delaware’s application has the highest score and, along with Tennessee, is a Round One winner with an award of $119 million
So now you see Rodel’s road map to the destruction of Delaware public schools. And for the record, Iris Metts was appointed first Delaware Secretary of Education in 1997.
So Paul Herdman helped write this amazing report! The title of this report should be, “One lies and the other swears to it”.