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Comments from new commissioners on tasks ahead

This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.

Archie: “We’re talking about restructuring the board participation level through committees as opposed to the SRC acting as a committee of the whole on all of the issues. We’re going to sort of drill down and basically come up with two principal committees – that’s a facilities committee and a finance committee. We’re going to have chairpersons of those committees who will then report back and interface with the staff of the School District about issues in those particular areas…which is something new, I’m told.”

Irizarry: “The goals are making sure that kids get the education that they deserve. I don’t think linear. I think very circular…. Some people say, ‘I’m going to handle this first and then I’m going to handle that.’ Well, that’s not the way life occurs. Kids are coming to school with everything happening around them. The system is happening around them, the streets are happening around them, their families are happening around them. They can’t just say, ‘I’m going to deal with school right now and then go home and deal with the abuse and craziness and all that kind of stuff.’ That’s just not the way it operates…. You have to say what overarching issues are really hurting kids’ possibilities of succeeding in school. It’s social issues, community issues, systemic issues, equity issues, health issues – and then there’s teaching.”