Joel Rose resigns as head of School of One

Rose resigned in March to start up a new non-profit foundation to advance the concepts developed by School of One. Why couldn’t he build the foundation directly in the NYC schools? Andrew Rotherham offers this perspective:

…School of One was developed by New York City but needs to spin out of city government as its own non-profit organization so the idea can be replicated elsewhere. But, as a city employee, Rose cannot negotiate the terms of that spin-off even though he’s the person who should and will run the new non-profit. What’s more, under the city’s conflict of interest rules, he cannot even talk to the city for a year after leaving employment there. That makes sense to prevent undue lobbying, but how could you possibly launch or run a program in the city’s schools without being able to talk to city officials?

The city could set-up a city controlled or “captive” non-profit, but most observers agree that’s not a good idea over the long haul given the politics surrounding school administration. Run it from inside the city’s Department of Education? Public sector bureaucracies and innovative ventures are pretty incompatible today because of a variety of rules and practices around procurement, contracting, and so forth.

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