No surprise: Kansas Education Commissioner Bob Corkins resigned today rather than waiting to be fired when the new moderate Board of Education takes over in January.
That's good news No. 1. The second bit of good news is that the board named Dale Dennis as the interim education commissioner. The current deputy commissioner of finance, Dennis is a longtime professional in the department.
I knew him when I covered the Statehouse for The Wichita Eagle. Unless he has changed enormously, Dennis is a solid pro who can be trusted to do a good job. This is in stark contrast with Corkins who got the job without having any education experience and with a reputation for trying to limit funding for public schools.
The Lawrence Journal-World also reports that Corkins received a severance package worth $11,000. I suppose that's fair and legal, but given the damage he may well have done to education in this state, I'm not certain Corkins should receive anything. Once again incompetence is rewarded.
The Lawrence Journal-World has the full story, including this choice quote from a moderate board member.
Board member Janet Waugh of Kansas City said that with Corkins, "who is basically anti-schools," at the helm, the public image of the state"s public education system had been hurt.I have more on Corkins here.