Frank Macchiarola; I have been thinking……
The words “something good” and “death” don’t ever seem to belong together, no matter how gifted the writing skills. However, Dr. Macchiarola death has forced me to focus on his life, and my own. In one of my brief discussions with him, I was quite frankly stunned by his very deep grasp of what I was trying to accomplish with ‘Science Skills’; to “tell the truth and shame the devil”; a much deeper understanding, I was to learn then many Black Americans; (he talked about: Ok, the children are here, so let us stop waiting, and depending on perfect parents to show up; or even if parents show up at all; this idea became one of the foundations of my educational philosophy). But, referencing ‘Skills’ in a New York Times article (I had no idea that he even knew we/I existed); and in a city with more than a million students in public schools, how did he find the intellectual time to think such thoughts? I think it helped that his own personal biography was driving this idea that education is the best path to generational social evolution. Many New Yorkers worked long hours in very labor intensive, sometimes dangerous jobs; they sent their children to school so that these children could have a “better,” more prosperous life then their parents. This hope, possibility and promise of education, for me are the greatest expressions and examples of the “American Dream.” Education acting in its best form becomes the great equalizer of life. I am also forced to think about his intellectual stature, his analytical skills and fount of knowledge and commitment. His passing helps me to accept that indeed, that era of purposeful and thoughtful educational leadership is over. Frank Macchiarola was a meal; these days our education community is polluted with “fast (half-baked) food” ideas that only serve to stifle the dreams of children; children who are the most in need of schooling that would nurture their dreams, and offer the promise of a time in the future, that is much improved over their present. He was a wonderful human being, who wanted to give children a chance (and that is all they need from us!); and the world is in need of more people like him.
Chryssey A Schloss When you said “His passing helps me to accept that indeed, that era of purposeful and thoughtful educational leadership is over. Frank Macchiarola was a meal; these days our education community is polluted with “fast (half-baked) food” ideas that only serve to stifle the dreams of children; “You are so TOTALLY right about that. But remember the students you’ve taught are out there and will be the next leaders. So do not despair.
Michael A. Johnson Yes, proud of you and all the folks: Someone my age that is on Faccebook (unbeknownst to you guys) commented on how impressed he was at the level of political awareness and commitment to causes that serve others that is displayed by SSC alumni.. Yes; hope pushes us forward, not always in the straight line that we want; however, straight forward nonetheless-)