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  • Wednesday, March 08, 2006


    Metro VIEWS

    Bob Sadler OUSD's newest
    $3333.33 a day Consultant

    OUSD: More is Less for OUSD

    An editorial from the Greater Orange Communities Organization

    At the February 23rd Orange Unified School Board meeting, the OUSD Trustees approved OUSD Superintendent Thomas Godley’s continued march to save $400,000 by eliminating the Elementary Music Program in Orange Unified. This week, just two weeks later, at the March 9th Orange School Board meeting, the OUSD Trustees will vote to approve Agenda Item 12 C, the state required Interim Financial Report. That report shows after meeting all of its fiscal requirements, Orange Unified has a current surplus (“unappropriated amount”) of $8,770,065.

    That surplus exists now, before next year’s budget is approved in Sacramento, which by all accounts will have more money earmarked for education than has been available for years. While we understand that the district must prepare for the “worst case scenario” (as Dr. Godley has made clear throughout his career at Orange Unified), the $400,000 question appears to be why does the OUSD Administration continue on one hand to attack popular, research proven programs, while on the other hand waste local educational tax dollars on unproven and controversial boondoggles with no research to support them? Even more interesting is why do our Trustees continue to rubberstamp every spending scheme, classroom cut and attack on our local educational values (i.e. Santiago Charter and local music) the OUSD Administration demands?

    While eliminating class size reductions and music, the OUSD Administration has dumped millions into the consultant program Focus on Results. Assistant Superintendent Cheryl Cohen in a report to Trustees on Focus on Results was unable to provide any hard evidence that the program is doing anything. In fact she compared Focus on Results to “marriage counseling”. She also revealed that while the OUSD program has cut back its use of Focus on Results consultants by 40%, Cohen did not reduce her funding requests. Cohen also revealed that she had a personal consultant from the program. When faced with growing community opposition to the program, one top OUSD Administrator last year reportedly told principals at their weekly district meeting that Focus on Results would be eliminated “over my dead body”. What a different district OUSD could be (perhaps a Good to Great one) if only our top administrators felt that same “over my dead body” passion about the loss of student centered classroom programs like music instead of wasteful consulting programs.

    Two weeks after voting to continue planning to eliminate the Elementary Music Program, this week’s board agenda is again full of examples of wasted local educational dollars. Item 14 D calls for paying consultant Bob Sadler to provide three days of “professional development” for $10,000. The agenda item states that Sadler is “a Method Teaming Practitioner and Instructor”. Not heard of Method Teaming? If you have ever taken any college courses you may know it by another name: Multiple Intelligences. This basic educational theory was developed in a landmark study from the 1980’s by Harvard’s educational theorist Howard Gardner. It has been required learning for every teacher and administrator since. Method Teaming is just a new name for that 20 year old education theory, now reinvented and applied to the business world. Godley’s administration wants to spend $10,000 in educational tax funds to reapply this basic education theory, now reinvented as business team building, to the OUSD Administration in a three day workshop.

    OND LLC., are the developers of Method Teaming (MT). Their website states: “Every person has a natural, dominant, primary Intellect. These four Intellects make up the "language" of Method Teaming.”
    The website lists the four MT intellects as:

    “-PD stands for Project Director. PDs are the engineers of the business world. They think on the "how" dimension. PDs must finish what they start. The PD thrives in complexity, but not ambiguity. The PDs think inside the box and probably designed the box. The PD loves to deliver.
    “-The Strategist thinks on the "what" dimension. Strategists are outrageously creative and innovative. They are always thinking outside the box and, unlike the PD, they thrive in ambiguity because they will invent models to understand the ambiguity
    “-EQ stands for External Qualifier. The EQ thinks on the "where" dimension. The world-class EQ has a built-in radar for finding deals in the market. They are usually excellent at qualifying deals as well. When you first meet the EQ they give you the impression that they know a lot about a lot
    “-The Networker thinks on the "who" dimension. The Networker reads the following instantly: people, situations, group dynamics, situations and cultures. They radiate empathy.”

    The $10,000 Godley request for the Method Teaming “common language” is just the latest in recent wasteful spending outside the classroom. OUSD Administrators asked for millions to spend on Focus on Results consultants to give a small group from every school a “common language”. Recently, Godley added the “common language” of the popular business fad-surfing clique “From Good to Great” to the list of OUSD’s need for a “common language”. With every request comes a rubberstamp approval from Trustees. Were does it stop?

    Last year, the Godley Administration spent months refusing to come up with $7,500 to continue broadcasting Board meetings to the community. Finally, after a community outcry, Dr. Godley found the money to continue the broadcasts. This year, Godley now asks for $10,000 for a three day consultant for a “common language” business management theory that is basically a rehashed 20 year old well known educational theory. It far past the time for the OUSD Trustees to question the wasteful educational tax dollar spending on the Godley common language of “consultants, litigation, and administrative waste” and return to the Community “common language” of basic education they were elected to protect- “reading, writing, arithmetic and the arts”.

    For More Information
    To view information on Howard Gardner’s multiple intelligence theory CLICK ON:

    To view the $10,000 educational tax dollar Method Teaming CLICK ON:

    To see how MT participants find their $10,000 ‘intellect” CLICK ON:

    To view Bob Sadler’s website on Method Teaming CLICK ON:

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