Today the Chron’s Ericka Mellon profiles HISD’s potential new superintendent Terry Grier as a man of reform, pushing hard, and making bold moves. HISD Superintendent Dr. Abe Saavedra also is a reformer who has pushed bold initiatives, including the idea of rewarding teachers with performance bonuses. Here’s Mellon’s characterization of Saavedra’s tenure:
Abelardo Saavedra, the man Grier is in line to replace in Houston, endured more than his share of criticism for making big decisions without public input during nearly five years on the job. And many of Saavedra’s biggest proposals — courting outside groups to take over troubled high schools and scaling back busing for HISD’s popular magnet school program, for instance — failed after meeting swift and powerful opposition. His $805 million bond referendum in 2007 almost died because of intense lobbying from some of Houston’s most powerful black politicians and activists, who felt left out of the process.
Hmmm, something’s missing from this paragraph: Gayle “Beach House” Fallon, leader of the Houston Federation of Teachers. Any big idea has to meet with her approval, and if it doesn’t, she and the Chronicle morph into the “powerful opposition.”