After the News Journal reported yesterday that Design Thinking Academy was closing a week earlier than expected, new documents showcase the amount of cover-up that was going on at the Delaware charter school that won $10 million dollars from the XQ Institute. The cover-up concerned a federal grant for funding that allegedly involved fraud by at least four employees who were terminated for their actions.
Exclusive: The Truth Behind The Closure Of Design Thinking AcademyDesign Thinking Academy
Shocking documents, never seen before by the public, give a shocking look at what led to the closure of Design Thinking Academy. As usual, it is not based on academics but adult decisions and a corrupt board of directors.
Delaware Design-Lab’s Head Of School Position Was Eliminated. But They Will Be Hiring A “Dean Of Academic Intensity”DE Design-Lab High School
The Board at Delaware Design-Lab High School sent parents an email on September 15th letting them know about Head of School Joseph Mock’s removal from the school. I though he resigned, but this email confirms he was ousted! Given that they had an emergency board meeting on September 13th, it sounds like this board did follow proper channels with all this (looking at you Ronald Pinkett over at Edison). Last year, the school won a ton of money in the XQ Super School competition. They won $10 million from this grant and it looks like they will be branding themselves as an “XQ Super School” next year. I had to read the email a few times just so I clearly understood (and stopped laughing) what these new administrative positions are.
From: Design-Lab High School
Sent: Friday, September 15, 5:20 PM
Subject: Important Message from the DDLHS Board
Dear DDLHS Families,
On behalf of the Board of Directors, we would like to bring you up to date on changes inside school administration as we prepare for the next phase in the process of becoming an XQ Super School in August 2018.
The Board will begin interviews next week for the position of XQ Project Manager and, shortly thereafter, will begin the search for the school’s XQ Dean of Academic Intensity. These leaders, together with a Dean of Engagement and Dean of College and Career Readiness, will guide us through the XQ process and prepare us for the opening of our XQ Super School next fall.
As we shift our administrative structure to help us succeed as a Super School, the Board has decided to eliminate the position of Head of School effective Friday, September 15, 2017. As a result of these changes, we are sad to announce that Mr. Mock will be pursuing other opportunities at this time. Mr. Mock has been an invaluable asset to our school since he joined us as Vice Principal/Special Education Coordinator in 2015. Through his tenure as Principal and Head of School, he has navigated some of the most challenging waters a school can face with grace and commitment. We thank Mr. Mock for all he’s done preparing DDLHS to move into this next phase in our school’s history, and wish him well in his new endeavors.
Mrs. Rebecca Collins will serve as our Interim Executive Director until such time as the new XQ administrative team can be brought on board and up to speed. Mrs. Collins has served as a member of our Board of Directors since early 2016, and she brings a wealth of experience in teaching, law, and school guidance to this evolution. We are confident that this transition will be seamless to our families, staff, and students. If you have not had the opportunity to meet Mrs. Collins, the Board encourages you to say hello the next time you are in the building!
As we move into the next phase of our school’s growth, we look forward to engaging with each DDLHS family to ensure that we faithfully support our mission and provide the best education possible for each student we serve.
Rebecca Collins is the Vice-President of the Board. Is it even legal to be on the board AND lead the school? Hmm… calling foul on that decision! And what are all these administrative positions for? I hope that gets paid out of their XQ grant cause the school doesn’t have enough students to have that many administrators. Dean of Academic Intensity. It sounds like a labor camp. Yes, let’s make school sound as grueling as they want it to be. Dean of College & Career Readiness. Hey, I know a guy who would be all over that. He’s bald and he used to be our Governor. He just loves college and career readiness!
I would have to imagine with all these changes that could constitute changes in their curriculum as well as their actual charter. Have they submitted a modification request to the Delaware Department of Education?
The XQ Institute is brought to you by Laurene Powell Jobs and the Emerson Collective. They LOVE personalized learning and seem to be big players in corporate education reform where we can just solve all the problems in education with some ed tech and less teacher interface with students.