Wednesday, November 5, 2014

On the education front in Massachusetts

With last night (this morning)'s election of Charlie Baker as the next governor of Massachusetts, a word on the direction we're heading in on education: among the first announcements made this afternoon after Martha Coakley's concession was that of the appointment of James Peyser as transition chair. If you haven't been around Massachusetts for a few decades, the name may be new to you. In Massachusetts, he may be best known for being was chair of the Board of Education from 1999 to 2006.
It's what he did before that, and what he's done since, that should be of grave interest to public education advocates. Peyser came out of the Pioneer Institute (as did Baker). Currently, Peyser is the manager partner for CityFunds at New School Venture Funds. You can read his latest blog posts here. Per his New School Venture Funds bio:
In 1995, he served as Under Secretary of Education and Special Assistant to the Governor for Charter Schools. He spent more than seven years as Executive Director of Pioneer Institute for Public Policy Research, where he helped to launch the Massachusetts Charter School Resource Center, which supported the development of the state’s first charter schools. Prior to joining Pioneer Institute, Jim held various positions at Teradyne, Inc. in Boston, an electronic test equipment manufacturer.asIn his role with NewSchools, Jim currently serves on the board of directors for Achievement First, New Schools for New Orleans, Success Charter Network, and Uncommon Schools. He is also chairman of the board of the National Association of Charter School Authorizers (NACSA). In June 2011, Jim was inducted into the Hall of Fame by the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools.
I would say that this is indicative.

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