The firing of the state superintendent of schools is all about change.
The state Board of Education fired the superintendent without following proper legal procedures. Later the board was criticized for how it awarded contracts.
While these situations were improper, they were used as diversions to keep the school board from addressing the problems within our educational system.
A Daily Mail editorial called these criticisms a "sideshow," adding: "The firing of a superintendent is not a tragedy. The failure of West Virginia's expensive public schools . . . is."
In a recent $750,000 independent audit of the West Virginia school system, auditors found many areas in which our schools have been sorely lacking when compared to other states.
Our state's per capita spending on education ranks eighth in the nation and our percentage of personal income spent on education ranks No. 1.
The audit found that West Virginia has the most bureaucratic school system in the nation. This has prohibited efforts by our governor and our legislators from bringing about changes needed in our public schools.
The audit pointed out that seniority protection of teachers has prohibited the most qualified teachers from being placed in the classroom. The study also called attention to the fact that principals lack the authority to place the best teachers in schools.