The Sorrows of Empire and the Cult of Eva Moskowitz

May 12, 2016

a - success_7

Another day, another scathing article about Eva Moskowitz and Success Academies, her would be charter School Empire beloved by billionaires and hedge fund managers. According to leaked documents, SA’s damning teacher turn over rate is mirrored in the upper echelons of Eva Land. There is, states the document, an “exodus from the organization’s top ranks.”
Apparently, even those attracted to the snake oil Moskowitz has been peddling for years, even those benefiting form the millions and millions of philanthropic hedge fund dollars, can not stand working for this person.
“We don’t have a qualified talent pool to fill the spots left by the departing school leaders,” said one executive in the risk assessment”, in one of the documents. “We are already in the territory of putting people in leadership role[s] who are not quite ready yet.”
Yikes!
Then there is the matter of Moskowitz, currently garnering a salary of $567,000 ,attempting profiteer on yet another student data system scam.
“As consequential as any of those exits was the departure of the Success’s chief technology officer, Steven Gittleson, which followed a period of internal recrimination over the network’s floundering $20 million student data system, called SMS.
That system-wide data tracker was created internally and budgeted for a minimum cost of $20 million as of August 2015, according to an internal budget document.
The broader hope was that SMS — like other aspects of Success’s operations — could set a standard for student data systems and a model for charter schools across the country, and possibly become an additional source of revenue through licensing deals.
Moskowitz and Gittleson signed a profit-sharing agreement in 2014, according to a copy of the contract obtained by POLITICO New York, that would have allowed the network to commercialize the product and eventually sell it to other educational organizations.”
Sweet!
Then there is this kind of stuff:
“I am concerned, “ said one writer of the report,” about high-performing employees and executives being ‘poached out’ of this organization as we become more prominent in our branding,” said one senior leader. “It also leads to loss of tribal knowledge, creating a high stress environment.”
“Branding?”
“Tribal knowledge? ”
What is this stuff ?
Is this the language of the public school system that Moskowitz and her supporters, despite all evidence to the contrary, claim SA to be.

Then there is the moral degeneracy of spending $700,000 on a rally.

$700,000. On a rally.

“The documents reveal uneven returns on political spending, including more than $700,000 on a pro-charter rally last year in Albany…”

Finally, there is the matter of Eva herself.

“CEO ( Moskowitz ) possesses unique knowledge of and insight into the Success Academy pedagogy,” a description of the issue in the risk assessment reads. “Absent the CEO, the organization may struggle to achieve outstanding scholar outcome.”
Please ponder again.
“Unique knowledge of and insight into the Success Academy pedagogy.”
“Absent the CEO, the organization may struggle to achieve outstanding scholar outcome.”
If this is not a description of the leader of a cult, I don’t know what it.
Spooky.
And the public is paying for it.

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