Dallas mayor backs DISD chief after Price critique




Posted on November 13, 2012 at 7:08 PM

Updated Tuesday, Nov 13 at 7:36 PM

DALLAS – After Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price hurled criticism at him last week, Dallas ISD Superintendent Mike Miles got strong support Tuesday from one of the biggest boosters of the city's schools: Mayor Mike Rawlings.

The lesson plan for improving the Dallas Independent School District, the mayor says, is to stay the course.

"Mike Miles’ plan to make this work is the right plan. He's focused on getting a great principal in every school and getting great teachers in every classroom, and that's what we need for these kids,” Rawlings said.

The mayor, who has taken more interest in education than his predecessors, spoke out after Price denounced the leadership of the new superintendent. Price told Miles and the school board, "This district seems to be in terror.”

Price singled out the sudden recent resignation of longtime Assistant Superintendent Shirley Ison-Newsome, who is considered a Price political ally. Rawlings wouldn't say if he thinks Price is wrong, but noted that that it's part of making improvements.

"Change is difficult. By nature, by definition, you can't just expect to do something different and everything, everybody's going to be happy with it,” the mayor said.

Price wasn't available to comment further at Commissioners Court on Tuesday. Rawlings said school improvements ultimately will be judged not by who's on the job or who isn't. 

"The thing that we've got to look at to determine whether we're in the right or the wrong direction is the performance our kids in the classroom,” he said.

And Mike Rawlings thinks Mike Miles can make that happen.

Email bwatson@wfaa.com